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So Cool! La MaMa, Theater for the New City Get White Roofs

LaMama1Courtesy La MaMa Preliminary work on La MaMa’s white roof.

The building that houses La MaMa got a new mural back in May, and now it’s getting another paint job – but not in the name of art.

The White Roof Project laid down a first coat of white paint on the theater’s rooftop on Wednesday, adding another 7,000 square feet of solar-reflective white roof to the neighborhood in an ongoing effort to reduce carbon emissions and encourage energy efficiency.

Juan Carlos Piñeiro Escoriaza, the project’s founder, told The Local that the Lower East Side is one the heaviest energy users in the city. “Our efforts there get you more ‘bang for your buck’ every time a roof is coated white,” he said, adding that he wanted to have contiguous rooftops along East Third and Fourth Streets between Bowery and Second Avenue painted white by the end of 2013. Read more…

With Rooftop Garden Designed By ‘Starchitect,’ Earth School Branches Out

IMG_1187Courtesy 5th Street Farm Project The Earth School’s rooftop.
IMG_1196Courtesy 5th Street Farm Project Manure awaiting installation

Not only are middle-schoolers at P.S. 64 creating traffic signs, they may soon be growing ingredients for school lunches. This fall, the Earth School, which shares a building with P.S. 64, plans to unveil a $1.1 million rooftop garden designed by Michael Arad, the architect of the 9/11 Memorial.

Five years ago, Abbe Futterman, a science teacher at Earth School, had the idea of turning the 56-year-old building’s roof into an outdoor classroom. To get there, the school had to develop a cost-friendly design, procure over a million dollars in funding with the help of local politicians, and get necessary city approvals – complicated steps for building professionals, let alone schoolteachers and administrators focused on students.

IMG_1180Courtesy 5th Street Farm Project Stairs to the green roof.

The Earth School’s principal, Alison Hazut, said the project received a major push from one individual: “It really was a parent saying, ‘I can help to make this happen.’ And that parent was Michael Arad.” Read more…