As part of the Climate Mobilization Act, LL92 and LL94 require Sustainable Roofing Zones (a solar panel system, a green roof, or a combination of both) on non-exempt buildings. Local Law 94 is the principal legislation of the two which requires (with some exceptions) all residential and commercial buildings undergoing a complete roof replacement; and all newly constructed buildings; to have a Sustainable Roofing Zone covering the entire roof surface. The specific requirements change depending on the area and slope of each roof section, as well as the building’s occupancy classification.
The most common roof jobs for a Co-op and Condo building (replacing the roof membrane or patching the roof) will be exempt from the laws. There are also exemptions made for certain roofs, such as occupied roofs and required buildings setback roofs. The DOB details the exceptions and clarifies the requirements in a buildings bulletin released on October 24th, 2019.
Local Law 92 was passed to adjust the requirements for smaller buildings and Department of Housing Preservation and Development properties impact on construction affordability.
An important benefit to consider is the property tax abatement for solar green roofs currently being offered. A one-year abatement of $4.50 per square foot of green roof (maximum $100,000 or building’s tax liability, whichever is less) is available to owners, provided they meet certain criteria. At least 50% of the eligible roof space must be covered by green roof and have a vegetation layer of which at least 80% is covered by plants.
Sustainable roofing systems under LL92/94 of 2019 are subject to a design approval procedure by the NYC Department of Buildings, like any other property modification. Applicable renovations include extensions and modifications to an existing roof requiring a permit.