Denver green roof task force makes final recommendations Email

green roofOn Monday, the Denver Green Roof Review Task Force finalized its recommendations to City Council for updating the green roof initiative that was voted into law last November. The revised ordinance gives developers and building owners multiple options for delivering green benefits on their projects.

The recommendations include eight options for new development:

  1. A green roof or green space anywhere on the site.
  2. A financial contribution for off‐site green space.
  3. A combination of green space and solar panels.
  4. A combination of green space and energy efficiency measures.
  5. A solar array covering 70 percent of the roof.
  6. Energy efficiency measures so that the building is 12 percent more efficient than current energy code.
  7. LEED Gold or equivalent certification.
  8. Enterprise Green Communities Certification.

For existing buildings over 50,000 square feet, owners seeking a permit must install a cool roof AND one of five options:

  1. A small green roof or green space anywhere on the site.
  2. An on‐site solar array.
  3. LEED Silver or equivalent certification.
  4. A financial contribution for off‐site green space.
  5. Enrollment in a flexible Energy Program to achieve emission reductions similar to those achieved by the on‐site solar option. Compliance must be reached within five years.

It appears that Denver may not see a big increase in green roof installations as a result of the initiative. The task force realized that the cost of a green roof could influence developers to build elsewhere and abandon plans for Denver, and owners of existing buildings might delay renovations and perform cheaper repairs to avoid the green roof requirement. The revised ordinance would allow the flexibility to choose a more feasible action that will still offer green benefits.

Two task force members penned an opinion column for The Denver Post explaining their motivation for the changes and their hopes for the future of the ordinance.

Read more from The Denver Business Journal.

Read more in this issue of Colorado Green NOW:
Landscape Career Pathways update [infographic]
OSHA outlines enforcement of silica standard
Top performers from CSU offer more plant diversity
Social media: keep it short, make it visual

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