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Large building (the MAB) with multiple rows of solar panels installed on its rooftop (illustrative render format).

Tonsley, Australia’s first innovation district was recognised and acknowledged for its commitment to environmental, heritage and engineering considerations.

The site was awarded a 6 Star Green Star – Communities rating certification in 2015 for its adaptive re-use of the Mitsubishi facilities, which was the first mixed-use urban renewal project of its kind to achieve this prestigious status. Retention of the Main Assembly Building (MAB) provided a focal point in the master planning, and set the precinct’s orientation to encourage innovation and collaboration between public and private enterprise on-site.

Tonsley has recently won a haul of awards for its achievements, including:

  • Urban Renewal Award at the 2016 UDIA SA Awards
  • David Oppenheim Award for Sustainable Architecture and National COLORBOND Award for Steel Architecture at the 2016 National Architecture Awards
  • Stuart Hart Award for Excellence in Urban Planning at the 2016 Civic Review.

The UDIA’s National Awards for Excellence celebrate Australia’s skill and innovation in urban development. The Tonsley Innovation District was nominated by UDIA SA in a highly competitive field against fellow state winners from New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland and Western Australia, respectively.

UDIA SA Chief Executive Pat Gerace said, “It was always going to be impossible for the judges to resist what’s happening at Tonsley with a vision that not only created a use for the site, but also a catalyst for South Australians to be strutting our stuff on a global stage. It’s a world class outcome that all South Australians can be proud of.”

Tonsley Innovation District continues to go from strength to strength with the support of the state government and key partners like Flinders University. Tonsley is also now an official suburb in the City of Marion with further commercial and residential development plans for 2017.

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