Landscape Architecture / Design CompetitionDriving Neutral
ClientCity Link
CategoryLandscape Architecture
Project Summary

The following is a re-design web version of landscape architecture design competition entry of a carbon neutral electronic car share scheme concept – ‘Driving Neutral’. The final boards and competition brief to the Power Street Loop Ideas Competition are located at the bottom of the page.

The ‘Driving Neutral’ landscape architecture design competition concept entry provides an interactive arts display that leverages the natural desire of humans to socialise, learn and compete in order to develop communal awareness around the issue of global warming.

It encourages the use of sustainable modes of transport such as walking, cycling and running by rewarding users of the application with points redeemable for carbon neutral electric car share.

The arts display is the foundation for both the display of carbon reduction data and the generation of renewable energy to support the electronic car share scheme.

The Facts

Australia’s per capita emissions are the highest in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and amongst the highest in the world.

The proposed redevelopment of the site corresponds with Melbourne City Council and Port Phillip City Council’s ambition to become carbon neutral by year 2020.

Car Share

Transport emissions accounted for 14 per cent of Australia’s total domestic emissions in 2009 at 83 Mt CO2-e (BITRE, 2009). 

‘Driving Neutral’ aims to encourage alternative means of transportation as a method to manage the growing congestion on Melbourne’s roads and become carbon neutral.


Since its redevelopment, South Bank has suffered from a lack of street life brought on by vehicle movement, inactive frontages and parking

‘Driving Neutral’ creates an active and vibrant precinct by encouraging street life through activity and technology in an interactive arts display.


Technology continues to grow exponentially; particularly in the areas of smart devices and wearables. eg fitbit, jawbone & nike fuel.

‘Driving Neutral’ aims to harness, support and adapt to these changing trends via the provision of supporting interface applications for users

The Approach

‘Driving Neutral’ uses apps and wearables to collect distance data based on the sustainable transport modes used by the community within South Bank.

Apps & Wearables
South Bank

Collected data is converted into equivalent car emissions to raise awareness of carbon reduction made by persons travelling via sustainable transport modes.

CO2 Emissions

Carbon reduction data will be displayed on a solar powered art installation on the Power Loop Site.

Public Art

The art installation is made from an array of modular solar-powered LED units. When stacked together they form light beacons that graphically display the community’s total carbon reduction.

Each individual unit produces enough energy to both continually power itself and produce additional power to feed back into the grid. The electronic car share scheme will not only be carbon neutral, but will eventually become carbon negative.

The art installation will be self sustaining through solar power production.

Collectively, excess power will provide enough generated energy to offset an electronic car share in the vicinity.

Solar Panel
Electronic Car Share

As more units are added to cater for the increase of sustainable transport use within the area, the art installation will grow over time, as does the availability of the electronic car share docks.

The distance an individual travels via sustainable transport is then banked up and converted to credits for use with the electric car share scheme.

Electronic Car Share

The Site

The proposed redevelopment extends and enriches the Landcare Concept Plan by providing an art display that flows together with the intended planting of natural vegetation.

Growth of sustainable transport users in the area will progressively lead to the addition of modular display units to cater for demand.

Complementary units = greater power generation = ability to supply a greater amount of carbon neutral car shares.

Key Points


Education and awareness are seen as fundamental means to making considerable progress in emissions reductions throughout the world. ‘Driving Neutral’ uses effective measures to educate and heighten awareness of CO2 emissions.


‘Driving Neutral’ uses gamification to actively engage the community. It leverages the natural desire of humans to socialise, learn, compete and achieve mastery.


‘Driving Neutral’ improves the local environment through the encouragement of different sustainable transport modes; walking, cycling, running and carbon neutral car share. This is intended to correlate with the natural growth on site over time.

Final Design Panels

Final Words

This project was undertaken as part of the Power Street Loop Ideas Competition held by the CityLink, in consultation with Landcare Australia, Arts Victoria and Victorian College of Arts.

The project team for ‘Driving Neutral’ consisted of 3D artist and landscape architect, Tom Reynolds, and ESD Engineer, Sian Willmott.

The electronic car share scheme and carbon neutral project was awarded ‘Most Innovative Response to Site’. The carbon neutral project is still to be realised.

If you are interested in discussing the Carbon Neutral Project more, please contact me.

The original brief can be downloaded here.