The City’s proposed Green Building ordinance, which would require that certain sustainable practices be incorporated into new and adaptive re-use construction, is still under review. The proposed ordinance was met with strong objections by many local developers when it reached Council, so it was referred to a subcommittee of City staff and representatives from the business and development community and the City’s environment board, said interim community development director Dennis Marino. “We’ve met once and are trying to get two more meetings planned,” he told the City’s Energy Commission on July 31.
The main objection to the ordinance as proposed was the requirement that the developers make a deposit before a project was begun, which the City would hold until the project obtained certification by the U.S. Green Building Council of, at a minimum, silver LEED (leadership in energy and environmental design) certification. The required deposit could tie up a developer’s money for quite some time, as LEED certification is obtained only after a project has been completed.
“The group has looked at other alternatives, such as penalties if the LEED standard were not met,” Mr. Marino said. He added that another suggestion was that the City, rather than the U.S. Green Building Council, be the certifying agency.