Council expands Deep Green Incentive Program
On April 1, City Council voted to expand the City’s Deep Green Incentive Program (DGIP) to include another level of green building certification options for new development. A level of green building is required in Mixed-Use Residential zoning near the future light rail stations, but the DGIP encourages deeper levels of green building through incentives that apply citywide. Council adopted the original DGIP in 2017, which included three tiers of certification options, with incentives based on the stringency of the program.
Buildings account for a significant percentage of our greenhouse gas emissions in Shoreline. Green building mandates and incentives seek to reduce emissions from new buildings through more stringent standards for energy and water use, stormwater runoff, site development, materials, and indoor air quality than required by the City’s current Building Code.
Depending upon the level of green building certification achieved, a project can qualify for different exemptions or waivers, including:
- A reduction in or waiver of permit application fees;
- Reduced Transportation Impact Fees;
- Allowed departures from certain Development Code requirements; and
- Expedited permit review without additional fees.
Financial incentives are meant to offset some of the costs of green building, including higher quality materials and certification. Code departures are meant to remove barriers to green building, like allowing a solar array to extend past the rooftop if a larger photovoltaic system is required to supply enough renewable power for the building.
Green building programs eligible for incentives are administered through the following green building certification organizations: International Living Future Institute, who built the Bullitt Center in Seattle (the greenest office building in the world); US Green Building Council, who administers Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) programs; Built Green, affiliated with the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish County; Passive House Institute US, which focuses on energy savings; and Salmon-Safe, which focuses on stormwater.
Senior Planner Miranda Redinger