Today we learned of more good green news for Pittsburgh. Earlier today Councilman Bill Peduto's green building incentive proposal passed with unanimous support from city council. This is a great start for Pittsburgh to regain it's status as the #1 city for Green Building. In addition to the passing of the city's first green building legislation, Peduto proposed new legislation that would require all new or newly renovated city facilities, and all development that uses tax-incremental-financing to achieve LEED Sliver certification, at a minimum.
This is huge news. Over the last two to three years a number of cities have leapfrogged Pittsburgh in the green building rankings because they have implemented the incentives and mandates that our local government has, until now, failed to provide. We have always had the leadership in the form of the councilman and the Green Building Alliance, and now with this new legislation, Pittsburgh will level the playing field. From the councilman's blog:
Today is a historic day in the City of Pittsburgh. At 10:00 AM, I introduced legislation in City Council that requires all new construction and renovations of City owned property to receive at least LEED Silver certification. The legislation also requires any new construction or renovation project that receives Tax Increment Financing (TIF) to receive LEED Silver certification. At the same meeting, City Council took a final vote on legislation I sponsored that provides a 20% density and/or height bonus for developments in non-residential areas that receive LEED certification. Due to the fact that the City Planning Commission had given the legislation a negative recommendation, a supermajority was required, and it passed with all eight Council Members voting in favor.Pittsburgh has been a historic leader in the environmental movement, and especially in the development of green buildings. Pittsburgh currently has the third most LEED certified buildings of any city in the United States. However, until today, local government has never taken action to support the growth of green building development. Today, City Council is putting itself at the forefront of this critical issue. Pittsburgh will be joining over a hundred other federal, state, and local governments in providing similar types of incentives.
Below is the full text of Councilman Peduto's proposal:
915.06 Sustainable Development for Publicly Financed Buildings
The City of Pittsburgh is committed to building and supporting sustainable developments, to yield cost savings to the city taxpayers through reduced operating costs, to provide healthy and productive work environments for all residents and employees, and to contribute to the city's goals of protecting, conserving, and enhancing the region's environmental resources. Additionally, the city shall help to set a community standard of sustainable building.
- The following development requirements apply to all new construction and renovations of City owned property in which the total project square footage includes 5,000 gross square feet of occupied space or the total project cost exceeds two million dollars.
- Any new construction or renovation project that receives Tax Increment Financing (TIF)
- LEED Certified Building: shall mean a building certified, under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program of the United States Green Building Council, that meets LEED standards for either New Construction and Major Renovation Projects or Core and Shell Projects.
- LEED Silver: shall mean a building certified, under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program of the United States Green Building Council, that meets LEED standards for either New Construction and Major Renovation Projects or Core and Shell Projects that receives a total of 33-38 points in the certification process.
Prior to issuance of an occupancy permit, all projects receiving Tax Increment Financing and all new construction and renovations of City owned property in which the total project square footage includes 5,000 gross square feet of occupied space or the total project cost exceeds two million dollars, must receive a LEED Silver rating level.