Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Richmond Region Energy Alliance

Richmond Region Energy Alliance (RREA) formed in 2010 to break down the barriers to residential energy efficiency and renewable, sustainable energy. Many homeowners do not know how to improve the comfort of their home, lower their energy bills, or reduce their carbon footprint. RREA is the local Richmond solution, a one-stop non-profit energy coach where people can go for objective advice on clean energy and energy efficiency solutions.

The SolarizeRVA program makes solar purchasing simple and affordable for homes and businesses and offers community-wide group purchasing and marketing to reduce costs, as well as pre-qualifies solar contractors.

Home energy check-ups are provided by certified energy advisors who can even install on-the-spot savings measures. RREA's partnership with Secure Futures provides no-cost solar for schools, universities, churches, local government, hospitals and non-profits.

From 2013 to 2016, RREA was the local partner for Dominion’s Home Energy Check-Up program. Through this program, they provided recommendations and install energy efficiency upgrades at no cost for 242 homeowners.

Also, RREA is a sponsor of Home Performance with Energy Star (HPwES), helping homeowners identify qualified contractors and access rebates and financing to make home energy improvements that increase the comfort, safety, and health of their home, while improving their carbon footprint.

For more information visit

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Public Works Building Receives LEED Certification

 The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has granted LEED Certification to City of Richmond Department of Public Works' Commerce Road Building 1 at 1654 Commerce Road.

The building has been designated silver certification under the LEED 2009 New Construction and Major Renovations rating system. The construction was part of the Parker Field Redevelopment Project, in which all buildings and employees at Parker Field's DPW offices were relocated.

Seven categories comprise the overall USGBC rating criteria: sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, indoor environmental quality, innovation and design, regional priority credits. Of the available 108 points, 52 were attempted and 53 were awarded. Silver certification is granted at 50 points.

Commerce Road Building 1 was recognized in several areas, including: water efficient landscaping, indoor air quality plan during construction and before occupancy, control of system lighting and thermal comfort, bicycle storage and changing room.

According to the Council, LEED certification “identifies your building as a showcase example of sustainability and demonstrates your leadership in transforming the building industry.”

The Council is now encouraging the city to share the work with the growing green community. Making the project public would put the Commerce Road building in the Council’s LEED project directory. Such projects are also eligible for additional marketing and promotional campaigns.

The Commerce Road Building 1 houses the administrative offices for the department’s Operations Division.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Take the RVA Bike Share Survey by Feb. 28

The City of Richmond plans to expand RVA Bike Share and implement phase II in 2018.

 Please share your feedback on where you want to see more stations and bikes!

Click here to take our bike share expansion survey – with a deadline of Feb. 28. It has questions about your experience with bike share (if any), where you might want to see new stations, and if you have any suggestions for specific sites of the expansion (with public access and close to electricity).

Our reach is limited and this information is important, so please share this link with your friends, neighbors, and coworkers:

Voice Your Support for Sustainable Development at Community Workshops

North of Broad
Downtown Neighborhood Redevelopment

Share your ideas about redeveloping vacant land that was once a downtown Richmond neighborhood. The city government has asked for plans to create new housing and workspaces, shape community spaces, replace the outdated Coliseum, and re-open the Blues Armory. Share your ideas here. A Richmond-based group will use the community's input to respond to the City's request to help rebuild a downtown neighborhood.

Saturday, Jan. 13, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Six Points Innovation Center, 3001 Meadowbridge Road 23222

Saturday, Jan. 20, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Black History Museum and Cultural Center, 122 W Leigh St., 23220

Other locations and online information here:

Monday, November 20, 2017

City Designated SolSmart Silver for Advancing Solar Energy Growth

The City of Richmond received a silver designation from the national SolSmart program for taking bold steps to remove obstacles to solar development and encourage solar energy growth during the 2017 National League of Cities (NLC) City Summit which took place Nov. 15-18 in Charlotte, NC.

SolSmart is led by the Solar Foundation and the International City/County Management Association (ICMA). It is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative. More than 100 cities, counties and small towns have achieved SolSmart designation since the program launched in 2016.

To receive designation, cities and counties make changes to their local permitting processes, as well as planning and zoning procedures, to reduce the time and money it takes to install a solar energy system. SolSmart designees may also develop innovations in areas such as market development and finance.

“SolSmart designation is part of our RVAgreen 2050 initiative to reduce community greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent by 2050,” said Mayor Levar M. Stoney. “As a SolSmart Silver designee, we’re helping our residents and businesses obtain affordable, reliable and clean electricity through solar. We’ve also signaled our community is open for solar companies to do business here, which drives economic development and creates local jobs.”

SolSmart uses objective criteria to award communities points based on the actions they take to reduce barriers to solar energy development. Communities that take sufficient action are designated either gold, silver or bronze.

As part of the SolSmart program, a team of national experts provides no-cost technical assistance to help communities achieve designation. All cities and counties are eligible to join the SolSmart program and receive this technical assistance. Interested communities can learn more at

For more information contact or call 646-3055.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

RVA Bike Share Ready to Roll

Mayor Levar M. Stoney launched the RVA Bike Share program Aug. 29 at Kanawha Plaza and lead cyclists on a 2-mile ride from across the Manchester Bridge to the T.Tyler Potterfield Bridge, ending at Brown's Island.

“Bike sharing programs are a community transportation service and desired amenity provided by forward thinking and environmentally conscious cities,” said Mayor Stoney. “I am proud Richmond is now among those leading in this regard.”

Richmond has teamed up with Canada-based Bewegen Technologies Inc., an industry bike share leader, to supply the bicycles and docking stations.The equipment will be maintained by Corps Logistics, a Baltimore-based firm owned and operated by military veterans.

The initial phase includes 220 8-speed bikes and 20 docking stations located throughout the city. A second phase is expected to be implemented in the coming months, doubling the fleet and including electric assist PedElec bikes, making it easier to ride uphill. These hi-tech bicycles will be equipped with a color screen, live GPS and can be unlocked through a mobile app.

RVA Bike Share is a public-private initiative, and Mayor Stoney has written a letter to encourage Richmond’s corporate and business leaders to engage in sponsorship opportunities necessary to ensure the long-term sustainability of the program. Click here to read the mayor’s letter.

Plans for RVA Bike Share have been in the works since 2012. The city was awarded a $1,064,000 federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality grant in 2014 to start the program, supplementing $280,000 in capital improvement funds made available by the city.

One-way trip and daily passes will be available as well as weekly, monthly and yearly memberships. For more information about RVA Bike Share, pricing, membership and sponsorship opportunities, please visit