a map of new york city in yellow and brown

New York City’s Renewable Roof Design

By: Scott Henson

As part of the 2015 State Energy Plan, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo mandated that by 2030, 50 percent of the state’s power shall come from renewable sources, such as wind, solar, and hydroelectric. Cuomo’s mandate echoes a similar policy in Germany, a nation that has implemented renewable policies and has gotten as much as 85% of the nation’s energy from renewable sources. 

New York City is poised to be a leader in such initiatives. The opportunities to source renewable solar energy on the rooftops of New York City’s buildings is immense. According to the Encyclopedia of New York City, the borough of Manhattan alone is estimated to have about 60,000 unique buildings. 

Solar panels and green spaces help a building owner comply with the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability Benchmarking Law, which requires owners of large buildings to submit an annual energy usage report through the US EPA online tool. 

Rooftop design is a cost effective and practical way for a business to achieve the benchmarks, in addition to receiving tax incentives and rebates. A well-designed green roof can improve overall air quality, increase property values, and reduce storm water run-off. A professional architect’s expertise ensures a business not only complies with local sustainability measures, but also improves the property value for future owners, while maximizing the tax benefits for today’s owner. 

Rooftop gardens offer several benefits, including temperature regulation, pollution control, and local vegetation. Solar panels provide additional benefits, including tremendous local incentives that encourage use of solar collection. An online calculator helps the business owner research the savings and benefits by location. 

Utilizing the opportunities provided through sustainable roof design in NYC, companies that adapt have the chance to earn LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification. LEED certified buildings qualify for additional benefits and incentives, including cost-effective utilities, less impact on the environment, and international recognition as an environmental leader.   

To learn more about adding a renewable roof design to your building, contact Scott Henson Architect.

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