Greening Our Facilities

Green Buildings & Construction

Construction Debris Recycling

Port Authority contracts require the recycling of at least 75 percent of selected construction and demolition waste (asphalt, concrete, steel, non-hazardous soil) by weight. Contractors must submit a recycling plan that details how the waste will be reused or recycled.

Sustainable Design Guidelines

Sustainable Infrastructure Manual CoverOn July 13, 2006, the Port Authority of NY & NJ adopted a policy "to reduce adverse environmental impacts of the design, construction, operation and maintenance and occupancy or leasing of new or substantially renovated buildings and facilities, reconstruction projects, and programs."

To meet the goals of this policy, the Port Authority has developed “Sustainable Design Guidelines.” These guidelines provide a design roadmap when undertaking new construction projects, substantial renovations, and reconstruction projects for both building and infrastructure projects. The guidelines take a comprehensive view of environmental performance, addressing the environmental qualities of capital projects, specifically in the areas of site, water, energy, construction, materials, indoor environment and maintenance & operations. The Sustainable Building Guidelines provide sustainable design strategies for new building construction, substantial renovation and reconstruction of buildings. Recently, the PA released Sustainable Infrastructure Guidelines, which provide sustainable design achievement for all new construction and rehabilitation of infrastructure projects.

The Sustainable Building Guidelines take into account the US Green Building Council's LEEDTM 2.1 Green Building Rating System, New York State Executive Order 111 and the New York State Green Building Tax Credit. Policy requirements vary according to project type (i.e. new construction, substantial renovations, reconstruction projects) and project size. The policy requires the most extensive application of sustainable design in new projects that are 20,000 gross square feet or more. At the other end of the spectrum, the policy exempts all projects that are smaller than 5,000 gross square feet. The policy requires the use of the Sustainable Building Guidelines for both Port Authority and tenant capital projects.

Green Construction Equipment

The Port Authority has developed construction contract specifications for Port Authority projects that are intended to reduce the harmful emissions of particulate matter (PM) from non-road construction equipment. To reduce these emissions, the Port Authority's construction contracts would specify retrofitting equipment and reducing engine idling. The Port Authority phased-in the specifications between 2009-2011, allowing the construction industry in the region time to retrofit and upgrade equipment. The specifications apply to all land-based and barge-mounted construction equipment, but not to marine propulsion engines, marine auxiliary engines, and dredges. The phase in schedule is as follows:

  • Contracts awarded in 2009 with total construction costs greater of $10 million or greater;
  • Contracts awarded in 2010 with total construction costs greater of $5 million of greater;
  • Contracts awarded in 2011 with total construction costs greater of $1.5 million of greater;
  • All contracts awarded in 2012 or later.

Construction Debris Recycling

Port Authority contracts require the recycling of at least 75 percent of selected construction and demolition waste (asphalt, concrete, steel, non-hazardous soil) by weight. Contractors must submit a recycling plan that details how the waste will be reused or recycled.


Bicycle Master Plan

Bike Plan Graphic

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey’s Bicycle Master Plan provides a long-range vision to institutionalize bicycle planning, practices, and policies within the Port Authority to accommodate the growing modal share of bicycling within the New York-New Jersey metropolitan region. The Port Authority has worked to provide bicycle infrastructure, improve bicycle safety, and increase bicycle access for multimodal transportation connections since 2010, when the Board of Commissioners adopted a formal Bicycle Policy for the agency:

In keeping with its mission to meet the critical transportation needs of the bi-state region, the Port Authority supports bicycling as an important and sustainable mode of travel. It seeks to provide its customers, tenants, visitors, and employees with safe and convenient bicycle access and secure bicycle parking at its facilities, wherever operationally and financially feasible.

This policy statement established the institutional framework and directive for bicycle planning efforts at the Port Authority. The agency’s 2010 Bicycle Master Plan pre-dated the redevelopment of the World Trade Center, which is now home to a major multimodal transportation hub. The 2017 Bicycle Master Plan reflects the growth in regional cycling trends since 2010 and includes the World Trade Center in its analysis of existing conditions and proposed strategies.

The new Bicycle Master Plan proposes strategies to achieve the goals of the agency’s 2010 Bicycle Policy, fulfill its bicycle-friendly vision, and support the multimodal transportation needs of the New York-New Jersey metropolitan region, though these recommendations are wholly independent of the funding and prioritization decisions outlined in the agency’s Capital Plan.

Download The Port Authority of NY & NJ Bicycle Master Plan.


Green Cleaning Products Program

In 2015, the Port Authority implemented a formal Environmentally Preferable Products Program to phase-in the greater use of “green” cleaning products in Port Authority cleaning contracts. “Green” cleaning products reduce the health impacts of those exposed to the products, and minimize impacts to the environment through decreased packaging, reduced energy and water usage during manufacturing, reduced disposal costs, reduced greenhouse gases (GHG) and air pollution, and minimization of toxic chemicals. In this Program, “green” cleaning products are defined as products that are certified by third-party certifying entities (i.e. Green Seal, EcoLogo, or the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Design for the Environment) or are self-certified as meeting, or exceeding, the relevant third-party certifications.

This Program expands on recent progress made by the Port Authority and its facilities to incorporate more ”green” cleaning products and practices, but it also incorporates bi-state mandates as well as broader best practices used in the cleaning industry. More specifically, the Program complies with executive orders issued by the Governors of New York and New Jersey (Executive Order 4 in New York and Executive Order 76 in New Jersey) to transition to procure and use environmentally friendly cleaning products to the maximum extent possible. In addition, the Program allows the Port Authority to adopt industry best practices, many of which are adopted by various agencies, such as the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority and the New Jersey Treasury Department. It also helps to support the goals of the Port Authority’s Sustainability Policy, which encourages customers, tenants, and partners to conduct th
eir business in a more sustainable fashion.

The Port Authority will continue to monitor and update the Program periodically to ensure that it is achieving the desired results. The Port Authority will also keep working with departments to strengthen the Port Authority's commitment to environmentally preferable cleaning products in line with the most current federal and state ordinances, industry best practices, and the Port Authority Sustainability Policy.

Download the Self-Attestation Form Here.



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