Green Roofs Are Trés Chic in Georgetown
DC buildings, like the French Embassy, are installing green roofs thanks to environmental rebates.
DC’s green roof rebate program is turning enough heads that even foreign governments are taking advantage of funding for sustainable development.
The French Embassy in Georgetown is one of several local buildings to take advantage of the Anacostia Water Shed (AWS) green roof rebate plan this year. Others include Rhode Island Row, 2300-2350 Washington Pl. NE, Aquinus Hall at Catholic University and a home at 813 A St. NE.
"We are thrilled the French Embassy has installed a green roof and are participating in the District's rebate program," Michael Lucy, senior consultant with AWS, said in an email to Patch.
The embassy's approximately 10,000 square-foot green roof was installed by Furbish Company.
“The goal is essentially to reduce [the embassy’s] carbon footprint and consumption of energy” Estelle Delfosse, coordinator for the Green Embassy Project, told Patch in an email.
“The decision to install the Green Roof aligns with local policies that encourage initiatives to reduce the amount of rainwater entering public water works,” she added.
Lucy applauded the embassy's efforts to improve its sustainability.
They "felt a green roof was one of the best things they could do. We wholeheartedly agree," he said.
Green roofing allows for greater storm water retention, reduced building heat and a longer roof life, according to the AWS website. Green roofs mean cost savings in the long run from both a public goods perspective and from a more private business perspective.
“Because of the green roof, no maintenance work on the roof is expected for the next 40 years,” Dana Purcarescu, the embassy’s deputy press counselor, said.
“Currently refurbishments take place every 20 years, and cost $240,000,” Purcarescu explained.
Nearly $350,000 of the District Department of Environment D.C. Green Roof Rebate Program remains for the taking this year. Funds are distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis for local businesses and private homes to switch to green roofing.
“We offer $5 a square foot for any privately owned property in the District as long as they meet some basic criteria,” Lucy told Patch.
According to Lucy, any DC or privately owned building qualifies to apply for the rebate program as long as the roof has a proven 3 inches of depth for plant growth or 1 inch storm retention benefit.
There are no caps for funding or size of roof.
Lucy said it is best to apply for the program as soon as possible, in order to start production this spring. The rebate plan will continue until August.
Since the rebate program opened, 122,000 Square feet of rooftops in the District have made the jump to green roofs.
More information is available at: www.green.dc.gov/greenroofs & www.anacostiaws.org/programs/stewardship/greenroofs.