Colorful Puffs & Critters Highlight the Javits Center’s Sustainable Space

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Javits Center, meetings
Javits Center rooftop, photo credit:

A cam positioned on the 7-acre green roof of the Javits Center speaks to the eye-catching draw of the space to both wildlife and potential visitors.

The beauty of the green urban sprawl, aside from the colorful puffs of sedum growth that are currently stealing the show, is that it prevents nearly 7 million gallons of storm water runoff annually, while also reducing heat gain. The result is a 26 percent decrease in energy consumption and a sustainable ecosystem amid towering Manhattan skyscrapers capable of sustaining a number of critters—like its 300,000 resident honeybees.

Unlike many green roofs, groups can tour this one. The center works with the New York City Audubon and other research institutions to study the impact of the green roof. Since debuting in 2014 as part of larger renovation project that also added 6,000 bird-friendly glass panels to the center’s facade and skylights, 17 bird species (a bit camera shy at the moment) and five bat species have been spotted. The roof is expected to become a wildlife haven as it matures. Sure as the crow flies, a new rooftop terrace and pavilion with room for 1,500 and views of the Hudson River will also soon take up residence here.

The terrace is part of yet another Javits Center expansion that will lift the center’s meeting space to over 1 million sf, creating New York’s largest ballroom along the way, and the shiny new accolade of LEED Silver certification. Additional highlights include 500,000 sf of contiguous meeting space on one floor and 27 loading docks.

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