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Eco-Roof Incentive Program

Eco-Roof logo

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Important program updates:

  • Residential projects are now eligible for funding
  • Green roof incentive has increased to $75/m2
  • Applications are being accepted for cool & green roof projects

The Eco-Roof Incentive Program promotes the installation of green and cool roofs on Toronto’s existing buildings and new buildings not subject to the Green Roof By-law.

Applications are currently being accepted for green and cool roof projects and will be reviewed on a monthly basis, subject to funding availability.

The City of Toronto launched the Eco-Roof Incentive Program in 2009 to support the uptake of eco-roofs by building owners, make buildings more sustainable and promote the creation of green jobs.

Performance criteria for the Eco-Roof Incentive Program are consistent with the Green Roof Bylaw and the Toronto Green Standard.

Learn more: Read the Eco-Roof Case Studies

Map: All projects supported by Eco-Roof Incentive Program to May 2013

 

Eco-Roof Overview

Eco-Roof Incentives

Eligibility Criteria

Application Process

Contact Information

Eco-Roof Overview

What is an eco-roof?

An eco-roof may be either a green roof that supports vegetation, or a cool roof that reflects the sun’s thermal energy.

What is a green roof?

A green roof is a roof surface that supports the growth of vegetation over a substantial portion of its area for the purpose of water and energy conservation. It is comprised of a waterproofing membrane, drainage layer, organic growing medium (soil) and vegetation.

For more information on green roofs, visit www.toronto.ca/greenroofs and www.greenroofs.org.

Greenroof 2Greenroof

What is a cool roof?

A cool roof is a roofing system with an exterior surface with high “solar reflectivity” and “thermal emissivity” that reflects the sun’s rays and reduces heat build-up from the sun’s thermal energy. A cool roof can be either a coating applied over an existing roof system or a new single-ply waterproofing membrane.

For more general information on cool roofs, visit www.coolroofs.org/HomeandBuildingOwnersInfo.html.

Cool roof 1Cool roof 2

What about other types of sustainable roofs?

While all types of sustainable roofs are encouraged, the City of Toronto’s Eco-Roof Incentive Program does not apply to alternative green technologies such as photovoltaic panels, solar thermal panels or rainwater harvesting equipment.

For more information on photo voltaic or solar thermal technologies and incentives, contact Toronto’s Energy Efficiency Office. For more information on rainwater harvesting, contact Toronto Water.

What are the environmental benefits of eco-roofs?

The environmental benefits of eco-roofs are many. Green and cool roofs help reduce urban heat and associated energy use, which is a particular concern as global temperatures rise. Green roofs also help manage stormwater runoff (reducing the pollutants that enter our waterways), enhance biodiversity, improve air quality, and beautify our city.

Adopted by City Council in 2009, the Eco-Roof Incentive Program is a key element of the City’s Climate Change Action Plan, an aggressive environmental framework aimed at reducing Toronto’s greenhouse gas emissions by 80 per cent by 2050.

Why does the City encourage the installation of eco-roofs?

Eco-roofs have many environmental and economic benefits to the community and to the building owners that undertake eco-roof projects. Eco-roofs reduce operating and capital costs for storm water collection, management and treatment; and reduce operating and capital costs for electrical systems by reducing urban heat. In addition, they help the City of Toronto reach its sustainability goals and support green jobs and businesses.

Eco-Roof Incentives

What incentive is provided for green roofs?

Eligible green roof projects will receive $75 / square metre up to a maximum of $100,000.

What incentive is provided for cool roofs?

Eligible cool roof projects will receive $2 - 5 / square metre up to a maximum of $50,000.

  • Cool roofs with a coating applied over an existing roof are eligible for $2 / square metre.
  • Cools roofs with new membranes are eligible for a $5 / square metre.

Eligibility Criteria

What buildings are eligible?

The Eco-Roof Incentive Program provides funding for existing buildings, and new buildings not subject to the Green Roof By-law. The program was expanded in 2012 to include new and existing Toronto Public and Separate School Board buildings.

Buildings must be located in the city of Toronto.

Specific requirements for green roof and cool roof projects are provided below.

What green roof projects are eligible?

The Eco-Roof Incentive Program provides funds for green roof projects on:

  • existing residential,  industrial, commercial, and institutional buildings
  • new residential,  industrial, commercial, and institutional  buildings with a gross floor area of less than of 2,000 m2.
  • new and existing Toronto Public and Separate School Board buildings of any size

What cool roof projects are eligible?

The Eco-Roof Incentive Program provides funds for cool roof projects on:

  • existing residential,  industrial, commercial, and institutional buildings

What are the program requirements for a green roof?

Green Roof” means an extension of an above grade roof, built on top of a human-made structure, that allows vegetation to grow in a growing medium and which is designed and maintained in accordance with the Toronto Green Roof Construction Standard (Toronto BY-law 583-2009).

To be eligible for the Eco-Roof Incentive Program, a Green Roof must meet the following specifications:

  1. Be designed and constructed in conformance with the requirements of the Toronto Green Roof Construction Standard.
  2. Will have minimum coverage of available roof space* in accordance with the following chart:
Gross Floor Area
(Size of Building)
Minimum Coverage of Available Roof Space
(Size of Green Roof)
Less than 4,999 m² 20%
5,000-9,999 m² 30%
10,000-14,999 m² 40%
15,000-19,999 m² 50%
20,000 m² or greater 60%
* Available roof space is defined as the total roof area minus areas designated for renewable energy devices.

What are the program requirements for a cool roof?

 “Cool Roof” means a roofing system with high solar reflectivity and thermal emissivity to reduce the urban heat island effect and can be either a coating applied over an existing roof system or a new waterproofing membrane that meets the performance specifications outlined below.

To be eligible for the Eco-Roof Incentive Program, a Cool Roof must meet the following specifications:

  1. Cover 100% of the roof area of the building, excluding mechanical equipment or other environmental technologies.
  2. Be comprised of a roof material or coating system that:
    • has a minimum Solar Reflectance Index (SRI)rating of 78 for low sloped roofs. Low sloped roofs have a surface slope less than 16.7% (9.5 degrees).
    • has a minimum SRI of 29 for steep slope roofs. Steep sloped roofs have a surface slope greater than 16.7% (9.5 degrees) and less than 41.7% (22.6 degrees).
    • has an emissivity greater than 0.9 and an initial solar reflectance of 0.65 (equivalent to an SRI of 78).
    • is asbestos and mercury-free and emits zero volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and ozone depleting substances (ODSs).

Application Process

How do I apply for funding?

  1. Review the Eligibility Criteria. (as seen above)
  2. Read and agree to the Terms and Conditions
  3. Apply using the online Eco-Roof Application Form

Please Note:

  • Green and cool roof projects that have already started or are complete are not eligible for funding. You must submit your application before work on the roof has commenced. Approval must be obtained prior to the work commencing.
  • Should you be approved to receive an Eco-Roof Incentive grant, your project must be completed within six months of being approved. Please take this date into consideration when applying for a grant.

Prospective applicants are encouraged to contact the Eco-Roof Program Coordinator in advance of their application to discuss their proposals (Annemarie Baynton: abaynto@toronto.ca or 416-392-1848).

What supporting documentation is required for green roof applications?

In addition to completing the online Eco-Roof Application Form, Green Roof applicants must also submit the following supporting documentation:

  • A photo of the roof prior to construction.
  • Detailed plans of the proposal showing percentage coverage, plant material and type of growing medium and construction details.
  • A copy of the maintenance plan as required in the Toronto Green Roof Construction Standard.

These items can up uploaded via the online form or emailed to abaynto@toronto.ca

The City reserves the right to request additional supporting documentation.

What supporting documentation is required for cool roof applications?

In addition completing the online Eco-Roof Application Form, Cool Roof applicants must also submit the following supporting documentation:

  1. A photo of the roof prior to construction.
  2. Detailed plans of the proposal showing percentage coverage, cool roof materials and manufacturer documentation and construction details.
  3. A 5 year maintenance plan and contract or equivalent assurance that includes:
    1. an annual roof condition assessment and resulting maintenance; all subsequent roof maintenance must meet the cool roof specifications as outlined in the terms and conditions.
    2. at minimum, an annual roof cleaning.
    3. if applicable, re-coating of cool roof spray as per the life expectancy of the material or site conditions.
    4. the inclusion of all maintenance recommendations provided by the manufacturer or materials supplier.

These items can up uploaded via the online form or emailed to abaynto@toronto.ca

The City reserves the right to request additional supporting documentation demonstrating that the materials meet the above specifications.

How are applications assessed and approved?

  • Applications will be reviewed on a monthly basis.
  • Applicants will be notified of their application status within six weeks of requesting a grant.
  • Application approval is subject to funding availability. Incentives for eco-roof projects will be provided until funds are exhausted. We cannot guarantee funding for your project will be available.
  • Green and cool roof projects that have already started or are complete are not eligible for funding. You must submit your application before work on the roof has commenced.
  • Approval must be obtained prior to the work commencing.
  • Projects must be completed within six months of the application date.
  • Funding is provided upon completion of the project.
  • Funding recipients will be selected based on the Eligibility Criteria.
  • Applications will be reviewed by an independent Review Committee, comprised of staff from the Environment and Energy Office, City Planning, Toronto Building and Toronto Water.

When will the grant payment be issued?

The City will issue payment upon completion of the project provided that:

  1. A complete and compliant Program application has been approved.
  2. The installation is fully completed in accordance with all terms and conditions of this Program.
  3. A permit has been obtained from the Chief Building Official in accordance with the requirements of the Green Roof Bylaw (for Green Roofs only).
  4. The following documentation has been received by the City:
    • a letter of declaration from the roofing contractor verifying the installed Eco-Roof has been completed in accordance with the terms and conditions of this Program, and includes the final size of the eco-roof in square metres
    • photographs of the completed eco-roof

Please note: The City may request an inspection of the eco-roof by City staff or its agent verifying the installed Eco-Roof has been completed in accordance with the terms and conditions of this Program.

Contact information

For more information about the Eco-Roof Incentive Program please contact:

Sedum Close UpAnnemarie Baynton
Eco-Roof Coordinator
Environment and Energy Office
Phone: 416-392-1848
Fax: 416-338-0808
Email: abaynto@toronto.ca

Mailing address:
City Hall, 21st Floor, East Tower
100 Queen Street West
Toronto, ON, M5H 2N2