GSA Expands Solar Power Use in Downtown Kansas City, Kansas
Agency’s Recovery Act Funding Adds Solar Roof on Dole Courthouse
KANSAS CITY, Kan. — As part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act’s unprecedented investment in clean energy technologies, the U.S. General Services Administration recently installed a new white roof and solar panels on the Robert J. Dole U.S. Courthouse.
U.S. Rep. Dennis Moore joined GSA officials to dedicate the new roof today.
"Thanks to the extraordinary investments of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the Robert J. Dole U.S. Courthouse is now outfitted with innovative, efficient, and clean renewable energy resources," Rep. Moore said at the dedication today. "This is just one example of how we can create an entirely new sector of economic development called the 'green economy'. Not only do these new solar panels create clean energy, but the installation created jobs for Americans and shows how solar energy can be effectively utilized. Thanks to the hard work of the GSA on this project, the weighty challenge of greening our government just got a little easier."
The roof consists of a highly-reflective “cool roof” membrane covered by more than 200 solar panels. The reflective membrane deflects the sun’s rays to keep the building cool in the summer and reduce the urban heat island effect, while the solar panels generate on-site renewable electricity.
“The Recovery Act has given us the opportunity to dramatically increase investment in clean energy projects across the nation and move our national building infrastructure to a cleaner, more sustainable future,“ said GSA Heartland Regional Commissioner Mary Ruwwe at the event today. “This solar roof is one of the first of its kind in the Kansas City area. It’s a prime example of how we are driving the development of new, green jobs – many of the roofers employed on the project learned new skills in advanced-technology solar panel installation.”
The solar roof will also serve as a demonstration tool for building occupants and the community. A model of the type of panels used is on display in the courthouse lobby, as well as a monitor displaying the array’s power generation.
The new roof replaces the building’s original single-ply roof installed in 1994. It has an expected life span of 20-30 years. GSA invested $1.6 million in the roof project, and plans to invest an additional $3.1 million to improve the building’s infrastructure and operating systems.
GSA was appropriated $5.5 billion under the Recovery Act to convert federal buildings into high-performance green buildings; and build new energy-efficient federal buildings, courthouses, and land ports of entry. These projects will deliver lasting progress toward modernizing the nation’s infrastructure, reducing the federal government’s consumption of energy and water, and increasing use of clean and renewable sources of energy.
Founded in 1949, GSA manages more than 11 percent of the government’s total procurement dollars and $30 billion in federal assets, including 8,600 government-owned or leased buildings and 213,000 vehicles.
GSA helps preserve our past and define our future, as a steward of more than 480 historic properties, and as manager of USA.gov, the official portal to federal government information and services.