ASLA DEDICATES NEW GREEN
ROOF AT WASHINGTON, D.C. HEADQUARTERS
DC Council Chair Participates in Ceremony
|The ASLA Green Roof. Photo by Sam Brown, Sam Brown Photography|
WASHINGTON, April 26, 2006—The American Society of
Landscape Architects (ASLA) dedicated the new green roof on
its Washington, D.C., headquarters today. The Honorable Linda
Cropp, Chair of the District of Columbia City Council, participated
in the ceremony.
Also on hand were Steven Peck, president of Green Roofs for
Healthy Cities, an organization that promotes the green roof
industry throughout North America, and Michael Van Valkenburgh,
FASLA, the landscape architect who led the design process.
Nancy Somerville, executive vice president and CEO of ASLA,
and Dennis Carmichael, FASLA, president of ASLA also offered
"Landscape architects are leading many green roof projects
across the U.S. and abroad, so it's only fitting that ASLA
provide a demonstration project on this sustainable technology
that can cure so many urban ills," said Somerville. "We
hope to provide a catalyst for more green roof development
in Washington and beyond."
“This project will be a highly visible demonstration
of the many practical benefits of green roofs for communities,
for building owners, and for tenants," said Carmichael.
"For the city of Washington, ASLA's green roof will help
clean the air and bring us closer to compliance with the federal
Clean Air Act, which in turn will release more transportation
funds to the city. It will reduce and clean stormwater runoff,
which sometimes overwhelms our infrastructure and eventually
flows into the Chesapeake Bay. It will reduce the urban heat
island effect, which can be a serious problem in the summer
and will even restore a tiny part of the biohabitat for birds,
insects, and plants. On a practical level for ASLA, it will
increase our property value, lower our building's energy costs,
and provide an amenity for our staff and a nice view for our
neighbors in taller buildings around us. Can you imagine the
cumulative effect if other, larger downtown Washington building
owners join us in this effort?"
To help track these environmental effects, ASLA has installed
monitoring equipment on the 3,300-square-foot roof and will
track stormwater runoff, water quality, and air temperature
to compare with data from the conventional roof on the building
next door. This data will be available on the ASLA
website along with visual coverage provided by
In addition to the environmental benefits, green roofs increase
property value, reduce heating and cooling costs, and can
more than double the lifespan of a roofing membrane by protecting
it from sunlight and temperature variations.
The vegetation-covered roof was designed and constructed
by Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, Inc., Conservation
Design Forum, DMJM Design, Robert Silman Associates, and Forrester
Construction Company. Funding for the project was provided
by ASLA, with support from sponsors and product donors, as
well as grants from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and the
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation/U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency Chesapeake Bay Program.
Public tours of the ASLA green roof will be available by
appointment on Tuesdays and Thursdays after May 15 by calling
ASLA at 202-898-2444.
Founded in 1899, ASLA is the national professional association
for landscape architects, representing more than 16,500 members
in 48 professional chapters and 68 student chapters. Landscape
architecture is a comprehensive discipline of land analysis,
planning, design, management, preservation, and rehabilitation.
ASLA promotes the landscape architecture profession and advances
the practice through advocacy, education, communication, and
fellowship. Members of the Society use the “ASLA”
suffix after their names to denote membership and their commitment
to the highest ethical standards of the profession. Learn
more about landscape architecture online at www.asla.org.
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