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Manhattan Sanitation garage and homeless shelters to be made greener and cleaner through renovations

Photo via Google Maps
Photo via Google Maps

BY ROBERT POZARYCKI | Seeking to make the city a little greener, the de Blasio Administration will retrofit nine city-owned buildings — including three in Manhattan — to reduce energy usage, it was announced on Sept. 25.

The Sanitation Department’s Manhattan Garage 7 on 57th Street in Midtown, along with the Department of Homeless Services’ Harlem 1 Men’s Shelter and Keener Assessment Shelter on Ward’s Island, will undergo “deep energy retrofits” to achieve a 50 percent or greater reduction in energy usage, and a 30 percent or more drop in carbon emissions.

The retrofits may include new insulation, redesigns to increase natural daylight and ventilation, upgraded electrical fixtures and automated control of all heating and cooling systems.

“As the Federal government abandons the vital fight against global warming, New York City is leading the way,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “With our Green New Deal we are meeting this crisis head-on. We must act now so that our children and grandchildren can inherit a cleaner, safer and fairer city for all.”

Not only will the improvements make the buildings more eco-friendly, but they’ll also save the city money, according to Mark Chambers, director of the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability.

“Deep energy retrofits are the next frontier in the fight against climate change,” Chambers said. “We’re crossing the threshold with these aggressive measures that will slash emissions and save taxpayers money.”

Before the retrofits are made, the city’s Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) will perform audits of the facilities to find ways to increase efficiency in heating, cooling, lighting and power usage. After the audits are completed, the agency will then partner with other city departments to implement energy conservation measures.

Additionally, the DCAS will audit other city-owned buildings across the city for future deep energy retrofits. These include all New York City Health + Hospitals facilities, as well as public schools, court houses, police precincts and office buildings.

The retrofits aim to help the city achieve goals set in Local Law 97 of the Climate Mobilization act, which calls on the city to reduce emissions from government-owned buildings by 40 percent in 2025 and by 50 percent by 2030.

The announced retrofitting projects are scheduled to be completed before 2025.

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