The green roof was installed on the quarter-acre rooftop of ConEd’s Learning Center in Long Island City. The Learning Center was created in 2004 at Silvercup Studios, when Con Ed helped raise funds for its installation. Con Edison also backed an educational project comparing green and cool roofs on the American Banknote Building in the South Bronx for Sustainable South Bronx.
This project’s 21,000 plants are excepted to allow the Learning Center to save up to 30% on the cost of cooling the facility at peak hours. Additionally, the green roof is expected to retain 30-70% of storm water runoff, regulating the flow of water into the city’s drainage system—potentially preventing delays in the subway system caused by flooding and preventing sewage overflows into local waterways. The project has been done in collaboration with Columbia University’s Center for Climate Systems Research. The project will be used by the university to analyze energy savings, the roof surface temperature, and air quality improvements associated with green roofs.