CounterpointeSRE PACE Program Announces Innovative Financing for Greenroofs

August 24, 2017 at 5:15 pm

PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) Financing for Greenroofs

CounterpointeSRE Program Announces Innovative PACE Financing Greenroofs

If you are lucky to be located in a U.S. state covered by PACE financing, you may be eligible for financing 100% of the costs to fund permanent green energy-saving, water-saving and seismic strengthening improvements – now including greenroofs!

Last week, Counterpointe Sustainable Real Estate, a leader in commercial real estate PACE financing, announced the launch of new financing program for the installation, service, and maintenance of greenroofs nationwide.

This innovative new financing program will help property owners comply with San Francisco’s new Living Roof Ordinance for one, and is backed by property-tax assessments funding – known as Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Financing – through which the local county or municipality offers a voluntary tax assessment increase in exchange for the funding costs.

“The financing provided by Counterpointe Sustainable Real Estate provides financing for 100% of the costs of green roof installation. Through the CounterpointeSRE’s PACE program, the assessment that funds the improvements is repaid with long term, fixed rates through an additional line item on the property tax statement. This will allow hotels, offices, hospitals and other commercial properties to finance green roofs while preserving capital and potentially qualifying for off balance sheet treatment. Assessments are tied to the property, so they may be passed through to tenants, are non-recourse to owners and are transferrable upon sale of the property.

A highlighted feature of the new program is 100% financing that includes all related soft costs such as design, engineering, egress installation, and prepaid service or maintenance contracts for the green roof.” ~  Counterpointe Sustainable Real Estate

CounterpointeSRE Green Roof Program

CounterpointeSRE Program Announces Innovative PACE Financing Greenroofs

Download the CounterpointeSRE Green Roof Program PDF to read more about it and how you and your property may qualify.

“CounterpointeSRE is pleased to work in conjunction with city planners to helps reduce heat island effects, manage stormwater, and increase open space in commercial spaces.

Through this program, property owners can increase ROI, property aesthetics and property value while making our cities more environmentally friendly.” ~ Eric Alini, managing partner at Counterpointe Sustainable Real Estate

Counterpointe Sustainable Real Estate (CounterpointeSRE) is a leading PACE provider, financing commercial real estate clean energy and resiliency improvements nationwide from $100,000 to $50,000,000.

Sounds like an amazing opportunity to fund commercial greenroofs and we need to look more into it!  For more information, please visit CounterpointeSRE.

By Linda S. Velazquez, ASLA, LEED AP, GRP Publisher & Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit Host

Have You Registered Yet for the Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2015?

March 30, 2015 at 5:12 pm

We have one week for the start of our Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2015 ~ Connecting the Planet with Living Architecture!  Have you registered yet?


Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2015
Connecting the Planet + Living Architecture: People, Projects & Design

Brought to you by and supported in 2015 by our Rare Earth Sponsor Tremco and our Diamond Sponsor Green Roof Outfitters, we are committed to delivering unparalleled “bang for your buck.” In order to encourage participation across the globe and provide a more level financial playing field to offer as open a platform as possible, we have always striven to keep attendance fees low.


Where: Online… on the Internet!

Pre-Register here:

When: Monday April 6, 2015 at 8:00 AM EDT to Sunday April 12, 2015 at 9:00 PM EDT and Archived On-Demand through the end of May, 2015. Social Networking Spaces are All Live.

Registration Cost: Fee is only $49 and $25 for students/faculty & government

As an attendee you have many opportunities available not only to enhance your understanding of our fast-paced world of greenroofs & greenwalls but also to share your own thoughts and experiences with colleagues – it’s a two-way street on this information highway!

Where else could you meet up with people located around the world at one time?  Here are some of your benefits of registering:

  • Watch and re-watch video presentations from 30+ international speakers on many different subjects in the Rare Earth Auditorium through May 31, 2015.  See the Agenda.  And earn up to 10 GRP CEU’s from Green Roofs for Healthy Cities!  See the rest online.
  • Better yet, participate in the speakers’ live Q & A Sessions during The Live Social Weekend Hangout on Friday, Saturday, & Sunday April 10, 11 & 12.  Interact and create a dialogue via video (first come, first served) and text chatting.  Ask these far-flung experts and practitioners questions that you might never be able to see at a physical conference!  See the Agenda-at-a-Glance for times – more to be finalized.
  • Create your own under 3-minute video about your work, research, ideas, etc., and highlight it in the Inspiration Nook – become a thought leader yourself!  It doesn’t need to be fancy or complicated – just get the word out about you.  You may even have something all ready to go.  Submit it in time for The Live Social Weekend Hangout and we’ll add you to the Agenda and Speakers pages.  Where else could you have the opportunity to expose your work to hundreds of people?
  • Learn about awesome people, products, and services in the Expo Pavilion on Saturday & Sunday during the Live Social Weekend Hangout.  Visit and chat with our wonderful Sponsors and Exhibitors in their booths, watch their videos, download their info and pick their brains.
  • Connect with friends and make new ones at the “It’s 5 O’clock Somewhere!” Networking Lounge – which, by the way, is actually open 24/7 through May 31st.  Start a public chat and see what happens.  Tell your colleagues to join you there at a specific time and day for a private chat and connect via video if you want to.  Looking or a job or do you have one available?  Network here at the JobLinks Fair on Saturday & Sunday during the Live Social Weekend Hangout.  Meet some of the Contributing Editors!
  • Visit personally with insightful industry leaders and reps at the Tremco Meeting Room in an exclusive, private setting.
  • Do all this with any computer or mobile device.  Take the Virtual Summit 2015 with you!


Read much more online about the Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2015.  We’re going to have lots of fun and hope to see you there!



~ Linda Velazquez

Support “Treeson: The bottle that can save the planet!” at Kickstarter and Change an Industry

February 26, 2014 at 2:57 pm

Back in 2010 I was introduced to Carlton Solle, an eco-friendly real estate developer and entrepreneur who was beginning work on Palazzo Park – a 40,000 sf greenroofed eco-luxury beachfront hotel and condominium resort with land preservation in Costa Rica.


Our Design Editor Haven Kiers and I highlighted this awesome project in our 2010 Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design in the #5 category: The Greening of Latin America.  Although it is currently on hold, we loved the graphics so much that we have used them for our Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summits!  Thanks again, Carlton, for sharing them.


Kickstarter Campaign

After living over 10 years in Costa Rica, Carlton Solle recently moved back to San Francisco to pursue his vision for a wonderful-sounding product called Treeson Spring Water, “The eco-friendly, toxin-free, trash eliminating, clean energy making, tree planting, best tasting, purest natural spring water ever.”

They created a Kickstarter campaign recently which runs through March 15, 2014, and they need everyone’s assistance in getting the word out and contribting – no matter how small – to get to their goal and be able to start production.


Non-petroleum based, and in fact, plant-based, the bottles are compostable and biodegradable and will not only be removed from the plastic recycling stream, they will be returned in the mail using their own packaging – at no additional cost to you – to be used to make clean power that Treeson will then use to make more bottles for their pristine spring water!


The vision of a “cradle to cradle” product with a complete lifecycle:

“By offering a truly sustainable alternative to established brands at no additional expense, we might inspire the whole industry to move to fully sustainable practices.” ~ Carlton Solle

Watch their short video below:

The Quick Version

Treeson Spring Water was created to offer a sustainable alternative to the plastic water bottles that are sold by the billions every year only to end up in landfills. Our mission is to change the bottled water industry from the inside, to lead by example and inspire the established brands to move to sustainable solutions.

  • Less than 30% of plastic bottles get recycled in the USA

  • At Treeson, we take our bottles back when you’re done

  • You mail the empties to us for free via any USPS mailbox

  • We use the returned bottles to generate clean energy

  • We plant a tree for every bottle we sell

  • Our bottles are made with 100% plant-based non-gmo materials

  • It’s clean, it’s green, we need you on our team! 

What about using refillable containers instead of packaged water?  Here’s what Carlton says:

“If you happen to live in an area with great drinking water, please continue using your canteen. More power to you! We are simply trying to create a more sustainable alternative to the plastic bottles that are already being sold by the billions.”

Visit the Treeson page on Kickstarter to read more about this potentially amazing project that, if funded, will make a huge positive impact on the environment and could even change an industry!


One super cool feature is that you will be able see a picture of the tree you helped plant along with its GPS coordinates and get even updates so you can watch it grow – all on your mobile phone.

~ Linda V.

Creative DIY Green Rooftops for Renters

November 26, 2013 at 1:26 pm

By Chris Long


When you rent or live in an urban area, making a garden dream a reality can be a tricky endeavor. Either you don’t have a patch of grass at all or you don’t have a sunny spot to call your own because the available space is shared.

But a ‘green roof’ isn’t out of your grasp! Urban outdoor greenery is possible when you realize that a ‘raised bed garden’ can take on a whole new meaning.

And since upcycling is all about elevating items and making them into brand new things or using them in interesting new ways, here are some ideas for taking your greenery up a notch no matter where you live!

Rooftop Raised Bed Garden


If you have the space and appropriate roof loading requirements, a traditional raised bed garden on the rooftop can be a wonderful burst of freshness in an otherwise concrete jungle.

Once you have the appropriate approvals from the building manager or your landlord, consider building a sub irrigated planter (SIP) within your raised bed garden.

An SIP bed is one in which the watering occurs below the soil through a mechanism of pipework or duct-like channels to reach the various roots. This type of raised bed garden will facilitate fuller growth of your plants and flowers resulting from a more efficient watering process because the water is contained underneath the surface rather than exposed to the air where much of it falls victim to evaporation or runoff.

And creating one is not nearly as complicated as it sounds. Here are some quick tips for putting together your own SIP raised bed on your roof.

  • The key to an effective SIP is the use of perforated corrugated drain pipes, which eliminate the need for a wicking material because the soil surrounding the slotted pipes acts as the capillary transmitter of water to roots.
  • Line your planter box with drain pipes that cover the bottom of the box and insert a fill pipe directly into one of the drains. This fill pipe is the means with which to water your plants, and since it is connected to the drain on the bottom of the box, the water goes directly to the soil and right to the roots. This fill pipe can be a narrow tube that extends from just above the surface of the soil in the box into the drain pipe below.
  • Finally, make sure to cut an overflow drain hole into the raised bed box to prevent overwatering.
  • Once you have your exit and entry points sorted out and your drain pipework in place, you can cover the pipes with your soil and plant your raised bed garden!

Just Hanging Out


Even if you only have a wall at your disposal and no horizontal surface area of which to speak, take your garden vertical by implementing a ‘living wall’ of sorts on a budget, incorporating ferns and hanging plants and unconventional display methods, like wire or planters affixed between wooden slats.


Once again, as long as you have a means for drainage implemented in your planters, and you observe the care and maintenance specifications for your individual plants, you can have a thriving wall of greenery all year long.

‘Planters on Wheels’

When you are moving your garden outdoors, make sure you have a means to bring your plants back inside when colder or inclement weather rolls in.


Purchase a dolly or utility cart that can also help you with your watering if you do not have a readily available source of water where you’ve planted.

Additionally, you can use the cart to easily move your plants around if the sun access varies greatly during the day — for example, if a roof structure (like a chimney or air conditioning unit, etc.) blocks the sun after a certain time of day.

Finally, if you don’t have a separate place to store the cart, if you choose a weather-resistant one that coordinates with your plants, you can leave it outside as an accent piece until it’s time to roll it back in.

Creative Planters

Once you take care of the technicalities, the sky and your imagination are the limit for what you can plant!

Check out some of these ‘out of the garden box’ and out of the ordinary planters that provide a burst of growth even when traditional roof garden conditions aren’t ideal.




Alright, so this last one isn’t something you’re likely to find on the roof but it’s too cool to ignore!

What are some of the unique ways you have created a green roof or window ledge when urban space and finances were scarce?


Chris Long, a Chicago-area Home Depot associate, is a regular contributor to The Home Depot blogs on many Green topics. Chris enjoys giving tips on a range of topics, such as raised bed gardening and green lawn care maintenance.  Contact Chris through his Pinterest page.