Washington D.C. Smart Roof - Roof Asset and Energy Management Program

Through the Smart Roof Program, the Washington D.C. Department of General Services (DGS) is successfully integrating roof asset and energy management projects to reduce its energy use by 20 percent across its entire municipal portfolio. The strategic approach to portfolio-based roof management is being applied across 435 buildings including schools, police stations, fire stations, parks and recreation centers, and office buildings that make up 321 acres of roof area in D.C.

The program has developed plans for restoring and enhancing roofs across the metro area, utilizing adaptable strategies per building. DGS focuses first on roof restoration, and then the prospective application of other technologies such as cool roofs; green roofs; and rooftop solar photovoltaics (PV).

The integrated Roof Asset and Energy Management program considers the following:

  • Roofs are still primarily there to keep the weather out of the building – starting with a stable roof portfolio is key – but need not be expensive (focusing on restoration)
  • Holistic approach to the building portfolio - no presumed technology, no “cherry picking” of projects that might dilute the potential for the larger portfolio
  • Simplified procurement – a portfolio approach significantly reduces the number of transactions while still including local vendors


The Smart Roof Program Objectives include the ability to:

- Conserve Energy: Insulating, air-barrier, and day-lighting

- Reduce Runoff: Collecting, retaining, and re-using rainwater

- Reflect Heat: Reducing temperatures across the city

- Collect Solar Energy: Producing electricity and hot water

- Manage Carbon: Tracking and reducing carbon footprints

- Lead: Demonstrating best practices and directly involving the community


DGS implemented a D.C. Public Schools roof restoration project in a K-12 school district that includes 152 buildings and 6.7 million square feet of roofs. The results (from restoration alone) for D.C. public schools in this district include:

  • Leaks dropped by 75%
  • Capital requirements dropped by 25%
  • Safety issues have been resolved
  • More budget dollars are going towards classroom enhancements



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