10. The Solaire was the First Green Residential Building in the US

The Solaire

The Solaire, located at 20 River Terrace, is the nation’s first residential high-rise to receive LEED certification, meaning the building meets certain sustainable standards. The 27-story building, which was completed in 2003, includes nearly 300 units. The building was constructed using materials imported from a distance of 500 miles or less to keep transportation waste low. According to the BPCA, about 85% of construction waste was recycled.

The building reuses wastewater via a filtration process that cycles it back into use through a wastewater system in the basement. Units were built partially using Low-E glass that reflects sunlight to help with insulation. The building also includes a green roof with solar panels that produce energy and stormwater drains. Elsewhere in Battery Park City, you can find more sustainability features, such as in Teardrop Park. Named for its shape, this small public park designed by landscape architecture firm Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates features a large rock wall that parkgoers can pass through, a water playground, large theater-like steps, and a long 33-footslide built over rocks. The park’s design, including installations by artist Ann Hamilton, includes sustainable elements such as solar mirrors, an irrigation system, and fertilizer-free soil.