By Will Soutter
The U.S. Postal Service has reported that the Colvin-Elmwood Post Office will get an 11,300-square-foot green roof, which will be constructed at no cost through the ‘Save the Rain’ initiative, a collaborative effort of Onondaga County, New York.
The Colvin-Elmwood Post Office's roof was reckoned structurally strong to support the extra weight of the vegetation, soil, and other prerequisites of a green roof. The green roof will comprise a new membrane, drainage sheet layers, mat, indigenous vegetation, separation fabric, and a wind blanket. The green roof blueprint is in line with the Postal Service's commitment to develop eco-friendly facilities and spaces wherever possible.
The green roof also deals with practical issues. The roof's estimated operating life is as high as 50 years which is double the period than that of the existing roof. The roof will also lower pollutant content in rainstorm water runoff collected in Syracuse's municipal water system. The Colvin-Elmwood green roof comes under the Postal Service’s greener facilities strategy, which covers the use of renewable materials, eco-friendly building components, low volatile organic compound components, solar photovoltaic systems, energy-efficient HVAC and lighting, and low-water use fixtures.
Chief Sustainability Officer, Thomas G. Day informed that the Postal Service is happy to partner with Onondaga County for the construction of its second green roof, which will facilitate the organization in saving energy and water in the Syracuse metropolitan region. With over 11,000 square feet of area, the Colvin-Elmwood green roof will also become one of the largest in the New York region. The green roof will help the Postal Service to fulfill its objectives of achieving a 30% reduction in energy consumption by 2015 and a 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020.