With 840,000 gross square feet of exhibit space, the Javits Center is New York City’s largest venue for conventions, trade shows and special events. Designed in 1986 by I. M. Pei, the iconic facility embarked on a major renovation project in 2010 that includes a new roof, re-doing the building’s signature curtain wall with high-performance glass, upgrades to the mechanical and electrical systems, and interior reconfigurations to enhance the visitor experience as well as boost operational efficiency. Early on, concrete pavers or a green roof were considered as alternatives for a protective element for the new roof. However, the weight of pavers would have required a structural upgrade to the roof to support their weight load.
FXFOWLE Epstein, the architects for the LEED Silver certified renovation project, and CRS, the waterproofing consultant, specified the Xero Flor Green Roof System, whose vegetative mats include 14 different varieties of Sedum, for various reasons. By re-cladding the building with high-performance, bird-safe glass, upgrading the control systems and the lighting fixtures – and adding a green roof – the building will achieve an estimated 26 percent reduction in the Javits Center’s energy use. And by moderating the volume and velocity of stormwater runoff, the green roof will contribute to improved water quality in the Hudson River. Clayton Rugh, Ph.D. of Xero Flor America calculated the green roof will prevent approximately 6.8 million gallons of runoff per year. In the spring and summer of 2014, 11 species of birds were spotted on the Javits Center green roof during a study conducted by the Audubon Society and Fordham University. Completed in October 2014 and measuring 297,000 sf, the Javits Center is the second largest green roof on a single, free-standing building in the U.S. (after the Ford Motor Company’s River Rouge Plant – http://www.greenroofs.com/projects/pview.php?id=12).
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