A group of residents and property owners in what’s known as the Dallas 2030 District are working to promote green buildings and action against climate change.
The district includes parts of Downtown, Uptown, the Design District and Medical District where the goal is 50% reduction in energy, water and transportation consumption by 2030.
In a city known for roads and concrete, Dallas has been working to go green with features like Klyde Warren Park, built over a freeway.
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It is the sort of transformation the Dallas 2030 District promotes, according to Executive Director Salima Moolji.
“We're a market transformation initiative and we want to create a high-performance building district here in Dallas,” Moolji said.
The City of Dallas is a government partner in the Dallas 2030 District.
Dallas Environmental Quality Assistant Director Susan Alvarez pointed out the Dallas Omni Hotel as an example of a green building.
“All of the lighting is LED. The skin of the building is specially coated so that it reduces solar heating. All of the rainfall that falls on the building goes into a cistern,” Alvarez said.
And the Omni Hotel parking garage is underground with a park on top.
The City of Dallas is a leader in promoting green building standards, Alvarez said.
“It’s just something that we should be doing and not how we’ve done things in the past. So, right now we're managing change. That can always be kind of a challenge, but I think it's critically important that we face this challenge,” she said.
The changes cost money but supporters say it is worth the cost.
Bill Moebius with JLL Real Estate helps oversee the iconic Dallas Bank of America Plaza which was built in 1986, but updated with modern standards.
For instance, the green night lights on the building are now LED.
“We talk about the triple bottom line, people, planning, profit,” Moebius said. “There is expense involved, but if you do it thoughtfully, and carefully, you can minimize the expense but also maximize the return that you get from those expenditures.”
Thursday, President Joe Biden promoted emission reductions of 50% by 2030 for the entire nation.
“We need green spaces, we need healthy buildings, we need so many different things to make up that,” Moolji said.
Expect to see many more of the features in Dallas and elsewhere.