Lynedoch is pioneering approaches to creating socially diverse ecological communities. An emerging ecologically designed, socially mixed community built around a learning precinct, this unique experience has generated insights into what it means to build up from below the foundations of a more sustainable world.
A mixed community of 15 families from diverse racial and social economic groups built around a child-centred learning precinct, that is financially and economically viable community requiring no external funding to sustain itself.
A working example of a livable ecologically designed urban system that challenges the notion that sustainable development and ecological building is too expensive. The following ecological design approaches have been integrated into the building of the Eco-village:
- Building materials selection will be based not just on financial cost reduction, but also footprint reduction – examples include using unfired clay brick made on site using a low skill rammed earth machine supplied by Hydraform, long life and low maintenance materials for roofing and window/door frames, etc
- Reduction of coal generated Eskom energy by 60% via the replacement of electric geysers with a centralized solar water heating system for each street
- On-site vermiculture-based waste treatment system supplied by Biolytix which makes it possible to treat on site all liquid and organic wastes so that they can be beneficially re-used for irrigating gardens and food lots
- Use of gas-fired stoves and the new low energy fluorescent light bulbs to reduce electricity consumption; 40% water saving via water harvesting and re-use mechanisms
- Installation of passive heating and cooling systems via north facing perspectives, carefully planned roof overhands related to window sizes, and the use of wind chimneys and underfloor rock storage systems for channeling and managing wind and heat for summer cooling and winter warming
- Use of non-toxic products for painting, wood treatments and cleansing; landscaping using permaculture principles; and strong connections to the land reform project across the road for supplies of local low cost food