Many New York City co-op and condo boards had been resistant to the idea of approving green retrofits and energy-efficiency upgrades, but that reluctance might be in retreat.
A principal at Urbanstrong, a green building consultancy, says the attitude of board members has shifted recently, according to a Habitat report. First, boards are realizing that they will have no choice but to comply with recent New York carbon-reduction laws.
They are also hearing from other boards that solar panels can be a welcome source of income as well as an effective carbon-reduction strategy. In addition, a sustainability-enhancing feature such as a green roof can increase property values, particularly if it includes an attractive lounge space.
The city’s one million buildings have 40,000 acres of roof space. Just a tiny fraction of those spaces accommodate solar panels or resident amenities. Some properties are making plans to green up HVAC by replacing old, inefficient heating and cooling systems with a combination of heat pumps and efficient gas boilers.