This ordinance would require buildings in Denver to have rooftop gardens

DENVER - The Mile High City's ballot this year includes an initiative to require buildings to have rooftop gardens.

It's known as the Denver Green Roof Initiative or Initiative 300.

Here's what you need to know:

What exactly would this initiative do?

This ordinance would require buildings that are 25,000 square feet or larger to have green roof features including rooftop gardens and solar-power panels. 

The size of the green space depends on the size of each building. 

Here's a full link to the initiative:

Why do people want it? 

The Denver Green Roof Initiative put this ordinance on the ballot because according to their website, rooftop gardens will help: 

  • fight climate change 
  • clean the city's air 
  • reduce building's energy consumption
  • manage storm water

Brandon Rietheimer, a member of the Denver Green Roof Initiative, released a statement saying,

"The most efficient way to solve these problems is by increasing vegetation on a large scale and a mandate is the best way to implement this solution. 

To fully realize the benefits of green roofs, they must be included in design throughout the entire city and not just on a few buildings." 

Why are people against it? 

Denver Mayor Hancock formally opposed this initiative because of the changes building owners must make. Hancock's office released a statement saying: 

"By taking a mandate-only approach and eliminating the opportunity for options, the initiative would actually hinder effort to pilot, promote, phase, and incentivize green infrastructure, as is being done in many of our peer cities across the United States." 

A group of businesses known as the Citizens for a Responsible Denver are also against the initiative because according to their website, it will: 

  • drive up building and maintenance costs 
  • cause higher rents 

The Denver Green Roof Initiative states that the extra cost would be offset in about 6.2 years through energy and storm-water savings.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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