January 14, 2020
NYC sending 24 more city workers to Puerto Rico after earthquakes // After a series of devastating earthquakes struck Puerto Rico last week, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Tuesday that New York City will send 24 additional city workers down to the island to help with ongoing recovery efforts. The city's new response team consists of 15 more building inspectors and structural engineers and seven more emergency managers and two mental health professionals, a statement from the mayor's office said. The total number of city personnel deployed to Puerto Rico now sits at 28, after a smaller group was sent last week to help. The initial team of NYC personnel, one from the NYPD, two from NYC Emergency Management and one from the Department of Buildings, was deployed last Thursday. (Full Article Here).
January 14, 2020
In May of 2019, New York City passed the Climate Mobilization Act, a nine-bill package representing some of the most ambitious climate legislation enacted by any large municipality in the world to date. The centerpiece of the act is Local Law 97 (LL97), which will require some of the city’s largest landlords to begin cutting their properties’ carbon emissions by 2024, with cuts of 40 percent required by 2030 and cuts of 80 percent by 2050. Building owners who fail to hit these benchmarks could face millions of dollars in annual fines…Tasked with working out many of those details will be the freshly minted members of the New York City Climate Advisory Board, a group of 15 area muckety-mucks including Empire State Realty Trust’s Anthony Malkin and Jaros, Baum & Bolles’ Scott Frank, whose know-how the city will put to work fleshing out and implementing the new legislation… “The board is tasked with addressing a number of really difficult issues that weren’t completely sorted out in the law and that need a lot of consideration,” said Gina Bocra, chief sustainability officer at the Department of Buildings and chair of the advisory board.
Staten Island Advance
January 12, 2020
Want to add a family room to your home or build your dream house? There’s a good chance you’ll have to factor in the cost of solar panels for your roof, thanks to a new city law aimed at creating a “greener" city. Local laws 92 and 94 took effect in November, mandating that any roof undergoing major construction be covered in either solar photovoltaic (PV) panels or a green roof system (covered in vegetation). Construction projects affected include new construction, vertical and horizontal extensions, and major modifications to the roof requiring a permit… Though the law provides exemptions for certain homes, like those with very steep roofs and those that aren’t structured to create the required 4 kilowatts of energy, it’ll cost builders and residents money to research that, and the required paperwork will delay their projects, said Victorio. “The exclusions must be calculated by the architect or engineer and submitted to the DOB (Department of Buildings) on a premise-by-premise basis,’’ he said, noting that his office hasn’t processed any such requests yet. “It will require additional cost to determine the feasibility.’’
WNYW Fox 5
January 2, 2020
It’s been less than a month since architect Erica Tishman was struck and killed by a chunk of façade that fell from a high rise in Midtown Manhattan. Now, the Department of Buildings is taking new measures to protect the safety of the public with more inspections and follow-up audits. “Our goal is to make sure that all owners are reminded what their legal responsivities are already and that we as a department are ensuring that we hold owners who are bad actors accountable,” said Department of Buildings Commissioner Melanie La Rocca. Inspections have already begun, with the city issuing 220 new violations after inspecting more than 1,300 buildings. (Full Article Here).
Real Estate Weekly
January 2, 2020
The city’s new Climate Advisory Board is weighted with experts from the real estate industry. Empire State Realty trust boss Tony Malkin as well as architect Jill Lerner and engineer Fiona Cousins have been named to the group of 16 experts who will help guide New York towards carnon neutrality. “With New York City’s Green New Deal, we are leading in the fight against global warming. These appointees to the Climate Advisory Board will ensure we are realizing our goal of reducing building emissions and making New York City carbon neutral by 2050,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio… Local Law 97 was included in the Climate Mobilization Act (CMA), passed by the City Council in April 2019, and part of the Mayor’s New York City Green New Deal. Other provisions of the CMA aimed at reducing emissions from buildings include establishing an Office of Sustainability within the Department of Buildings requiring most new building projects to have solar panels or a green roof covering 100 percent of unoccupied roof space, and requiring all buildings over 25,000 s/f to post energy efficiency grade signs by mid-2020.