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Friday, February 23, 2007

St. Louis Passes First Green Building Law

Last week, the Board of Aldermen passed the city's first "green building" law.

Sponsored by Alderman Fred Wessels (D-13th) and President Jim Shrewsbury, Board Bill 323 mandates that all city-owned new construction and major renovation must be certified LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Silver or higher. (Read all about LEED here.)

The new law will be in effect for the next three city building projects, the two recreation centers being built with money raised by Proposition P as well as the Animal House.

Shrewsbury's office is also working on legislation to encourage green building in private construction and rehabilitation projects.


Anonymous said...

Is a day coming when the city would make owners increase energy efficiency as part of any rehab permit over a certain dollar amount?

Is there proof that higher energy standards lead to higher rents or sales prices for developers, thus offsetting increased development costs, or do these savings merely translate to savings to future owners and tenants?

Anonymous said...

Shrewsbury would put the environment ahead of people! What a jerk.

Anonymous said...

From what I understand, this would just apply to commercial buildings, which would not put the burden on individual renter/owners (LEED for houses is only in a pilot phase now).

Anonymous said...

We have ten years to reverse the warming trend before it goes haywire. I want my grandkids (who will be people) to be able to play outside. Thank You Jim. I've seen some charge more on a whim... so why wouldn't actually improving a property improve rents. We need more residential programs/laws and automobile laws to ensure our future is a future. Rental property effeciency is a typically a joke. Who cares... The owners don't have to pay the bill. There is proof (no debate)that we're f*@#ing up our air, buildings are a large part of it, and something MUST BE DONE. PERIOD.

Jason Stone said...

Yes, there is significant evidence that building green not only leads to monthly savings for owners and tenants, but also results in an increase in property value and higher rents (particularly among commercial and large-scale residential ventures). A great example is the Solaire in Chicago (http://www.thesolaire.com/), which outpaced comparable development sales and receives higher than average rents among comparable properties.

To the comment about applying to commercial buildings -- this only applies to "city owned new construction and major renovation," not all new construction projects.

Jason Stone
Sage (Green Only) Homebuilders
St. Louis, MO

0footprint said...

As a local St. Louis supplier of green building products, I constantly hear this discussion. Although the fact is that building green leads to savings for owners and tenants and increased property value, the issue of higher rent does concern me. However, I believe that this is a temporary market adjustment issue and lower wage earners and smaller business won't be affected as much because as stated, this law applies to city owned new construction and major renovation.

Jermain Todd
MWANZI CO. | St. Louis Green Building Supply
St. Louis, MO