For instance, it may be inconvenient to take a lawnmower to the roof on a weekly basis if there is an area of grass that requires regular trimming. Maintaining an intensive roof can be quite involved. While installing a green roof will not inherently qualify a project for LEED points, green roofs will contribute to achieving points in any number of categories including heat island effect reduction, storm water quantity and quality mitigation, and a reduction in energy usage. The insulating properties of the soil can also help reduce sound transmission through the roof from outside the building. GREEN ROOF COSTS AND BENEFITS. The two kinds of green roofs: intensive and extensive. A green or cool roof can be installed with solar panels. Green Roofs come in many different forms, specified to suit individual needs. They also help manage stormwater runoff in areas with a lot of rainfall and can improve air quality when installed in urban environments or on large, city-wide scales. But, as you can imagine, having a garden on your roof also brings its downsides. According to the National Park Service, over its estimated lifespan of 40 years a green roof would save about $200,000, of which, nearly two–thirds would come from reduced energy costs. Intensive green roofs weigh from 35 pounds to beyond 100 pounds per square foot when dry - it is all a matter of the soil depth, which is affected by the amount of mounding that is used. Help make Archtoolbox better for everyone. With growing deforestation and urban expansion there are less plants naturally available to absorb the growing emissions of carbon dioxide. Green roofs can help reduce stormwater run-off, mitigate the urban heat island effect and clean the air, benefits that accrue to the community. Furthermore, these modules also make maintenance such as finding roof leaks, or moving sections of roof very easy. We have attempted to address this by using high albedo (light colored) materials, but this simply reflects the radiant heat to other materials that can absorb it an release it in the evenings. Bauder has experience in helping design accessible roofs and roof gardens to achieve the right layout and planting choices. Heat islands are created by buildings and pavement that absorb sunlight during the day and release the energy as heat in the evening. While the benefits of green roofs aren’t widely recognized in North America yet, green roofs are popular in Europe. Many people are ‘going green’ in the hopes of reducing their own carbon footprint and lowering their energy costs. You’ll also help to slow climate change, reduce the amount of stormwater runoff and improve the water quality of rivers, lakes and streams. The owner should understand that a green roof requires routine landscape maintenance, which can vary from occasional to regular and can add a significant ongoing cost. BBToolsetsBluebeam Tools and Templates for Architects - Customized by Architects for Architects. Green roofs tend to improve the life of the membrane because it is completely covered by plantings and isn't exposed to the sun's harsh UV rays. There are three types of green roofs. This deeper soil allows intensive roofs to accommodate large plants and dramatic plant groupings. Learn more by reading through the advantages and disadvantages of green roofs: Advantages . An extensive green roof generally costs between $10 to $24 per square foot. It is important that a protective barrier be used over the waterproofing membrane. Intensive systems allow the designer to create a park-like setting so they are the best option for roof gardens that will be occupied. Extensive – Roofs that are covered by hearty native ground cover such as grass, thyme, and sedums. However, intensive roofs also have greater potential for ecological benefit and amenity use than extensive roofs. They require complex structural support and irrigation. Intensive green roofs, with increased layers and ability to retain large amounts of water, make this consideration especially important. The soil is usually not more than 5" deep and is sometimes contained by a tray system, which provides a barrier to excessive growth, protects the roof membrane, and also interlocks the entire system together to prevent wind damage. As you invest in your home, make a long term investment in a green roof. Although intensive green roofs are, on the whole designed for people they can provide important ‘garden’ habitat in our towns and cities. They are expensive, and more intensive green roof… Plants for Green Roofs This system supports everything from small personal/home gardens to full scale public parks. Rainwater is stored by the green roof substrate and then … This type of green roof is the best for homes and small buildings since they are lightweight, have less startup costs, and are much easier to maintain than the intensive green roofs, Semi-Intensive – Combination of semi-intensive and extensive roof types. For example, research published by the National Research Council of … Since the plants sit on top of the roofing materials they act as a barrier, protecting the roof from direct ultra–violet radiation, wind, hail and extreme temperatures. Installing a green roof can cost up to twice as much as installing a conventional roof. Display and/or use of the information contained within this site constitutes acceptance of the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. In addition to the mosses, grasses, and sedum of extensive roofs, semi-intensive plantings include herbs, flowering plants, taller grasses, and small shrubs. Gardens and parks on roofs can store a great deal of water and are therefore good Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SUDS) for stormwater management. Before getting into the benefits of a green roof, let’s talk about the types of green roofs you might consider. Do you own an eco-friendly roof? But this rooftop garden type also requires intensive care, with regular professional maintenance and advanced irrigation systems. What problems do green roofs solve? Regular Roof Green Roof Expand roof life 2x3 times (up to 60 years) Whilst intensive green roofs are more formal spaces they can provide inherent benefit for biodiversity. Furthermore, the water that does run off a green roof is filtered through the vegetation, so it is much cleaner. Maintenance is also important to consider when designing a green roof. The plants and soils also filter the stormwater, which helps clean it of pollutants that can negatively affect the natural surroundings. Archtoolbox is a Trademark of Aggregate Digital LLC. A green roof is one that is covered – either partially or completely – with vegetation. As an Amazon Associate, Archtoolbox earns from qualifying purchases. This potentially lessens the need for complex and expensive drainage systems and reduces the amount of pollution in our rivers, lakes, and oceans. Intensive – These roof types can support trees, shrubs, and even benches. How to Set Up Your Website PortfolioA free guide to hosting your own website potfolio. Please consult a professional architect, engineer, consultant, or agency for advice about specific projects, buildings, conditions, codes, and/or regulations. The benefits of green roofs With continued urban expansion absorbing the habitats of our indigenous plants, insect and birds, living roofs can provide fresh areas for the local ecology to thrive. However, maintenance requirements are generally no more than would be expected for sidewalk planters. An intensive green roof offers a great potential for highly creative designs and biodiversity. In the winter time a green roof acts as insulation, keeping more heat in than a standard roof. Any water that is released is done so at a slower and more consistent rate, which helps prevent flooding and runoff that can be destructive to the surrounding environment. It is important that all local codes and standards are adhered to. You will find that there are so many benefits of green roofs, which will make your home perfect, and we will tell you some of the problems that can be solved by green roofs. Green roofs can help reduce energy costs for a building by acting as another layer of insulation between the inside and outside of the roof. The plants, if chosen correctly for the climate, rarely need water so an irrigation system is not required. If the air on the roof is made cooler by a green roof, this process is easier and uses less energy. Intensive green roofs and roof gardens. It also makes retrofitting an existing structure with a green roof more expensive than designing a green roof into a new building. Scientists at Michigan State University found that replacing traditional roofing materials with green roofs in an urban area the size of Detroit, with a population of about one million, would capture more than 55,000 tons of carbon. There are a number of things to consider when designing for a green roof. It’s very large and planted more deeply, and it provides a nesting habitat for birds, as well as energy and water management benefits. Intensive green roofs use a variety of plant species, which may include trees and shrubs. Green roofs are also attractive, and some can be very low-maintenance, extending the lifespan of the roof itself. This article provides an general overview of green roofs installed on buildings. Semi-intensive systems generally weigh between 25 and 40 pounds per square foot when dry. Intensive green roofs tend to be areas where greater access and people traffic is envisaged. In the summertime the vegetation on the roof absorbs the light and heat from the sun, keeping the roof cool. It is also important to factor in the type and lifetime of the roof membrane that will be used. As the name suggests, a semi-extensive roof falls somewhere in the middle of an intensive and extensive green roof in terms of depth and weight. This leads to lower ambient temperatures in the microclimate surrounding buildings. The phenomenon leads to zones of higher temperatures around urban areas. Environmental benefits – Improves air quality and reduces the Urban Heat Island Effect, keeping air temperature cooler than a traditional rooftop would . The structural engineer must factor in the weight of completely saturated soil since the plantings and the soil will hold a significant amount of water. All rights reserved. This website uses cookies. #2 Green roofs reduce stormwater runoff. If so, share your experience in the comments below! Intensive green roofs require the deepest soil and have the greatest impact on the structural design, but they also accommodate all types of plantings including large shrubs and trees. Green roofs actually offer many advantages and could offer many environmental benefits. commercial and public buildings include: • Improved water quality due to reduced stormwater runoff and fewer overflows of combined sanitary 2. Intensive Roofs are thicker and have a minimum depth of 12.8cm (5 1 ⁄ 16 in). Although green roofing systems come with several inconveniences, their pros far outweigh their cons. Intensive roofs are usually occupied so special attention needs to be paid to walkways and other occupied zones so that visitor safety is maintained. In addition, to the benefits of removing pollutants, green roofs can also provide climate change mitigation through managing temperature. Urban agriculture on green roofs would be considered an intensive green roof, as they need regular maintenance, relatively deep soils and a certain amount of irrigation. You can choose from the three main types of green roofs: Intensive Roofs: An intensive roof often functions as a rooftop park or a community garden. What is an Intensive Green Roof? Green roofs can provide much needed vegetation in urban areas that need it the most. Fertilizers are also not required except in rare instances where weeds need to be controlled. It can support small home gardens, playgrounds, full-scale parks, and even vegetable gardens. Perhaps the most important benefit of green roofs is that they can reduce the amount of and improve the quality of stormwater runoff from a building site. That is roughly similar to eliminating a year’s worth of carbon dioxide emitted by 10,000 midsize SUVs and trucks. Green roofs not only reduce the amount of energy your home uses, but they also have a wide variety of ecological benefits. Intended for recreational, sporting and leisure purposes, they are often indistinguishable from at-grade landscapes. That’s one less thing to worry about cleaning and maintaining around the house. Green Roof Systems: Intensive, Semi-Intensive, and Extensive, Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs): A Guide for Architects, Fabrics and Textiles for Interiors and Furniture, Types of Roof Membranes for Flat or Low-Slope Roofs, Intumescent Paint, Fireproofing, and Firestopping, Through Penetration Firestop and Fire Resistive Joint Systems, sedum, moss, grass, herbs, flowers, shrubs. Another term for these green roofs is “rooftop garden.” When it comes to installation, there are two main types of Green Roofs to choose from. Semi-intensive green roofs require a deeper soil layer, but the payoff is in the types of plantings that can be used. Combining a green roof and solar panels may actually benefit both installations by providing shade for the green roof plants, and lower temperatures for the solar panels which can boost efficiency. We make sure they remain successful landscapes for years to come. One benefit of green roofs that is not easily quantifiable is the aesthetic improvement that landscape provides. Garden Roof® Assembly: Intensive - The landscape possibilities with an Intensive Garden Roof® Assembly are virtually limitless. The wide variety of benefits include environmental, economic and even social advantages. Of course, this comes with a steeper price tag due to the additional weight and root barriers needed. Extensive green roofs are not usually intended for general public access, and are chosen mostly for their ecological benefits. However, this depth also means that an intensive green roof adds a lot of weight to a building, which your architect or structural engineer will need to account for. Best Architecture BooksOur list of the top reference books for architects - these are the ones we have on our shelf. Heat islands, especially in urban areas, negatively affect microclimates by raising temperatures and altering air movement patterns. Therefore, lower air temperatures on the roof improve the efficiency of heat–rejecting rooftop HVAC equipment because it is operating at a lower ambient temper… Intensive Green Roof Systems – The Advantages. Apart from the effective intensive green roof weight, depth and thickness, there are also a number of benefits that apply to the overall green roof concept. By using an ANS GrufeKit system as the base of your semi-intensive green roof you will benefit from a strong and flexible roof covering that can be self-installed with its simple clip together modules. Compared to traditional roofs, green roofs can cut down building electricity consumption by 2%–6% especially for summer cooling by maintaining temperature. A properly designed and installed extensive green-roof system can cost $108–$248/m 2 ($10–$23/sq ft) while an intensive green roof costs $355–$2,368/m 2 ($33–$220/sq ft) However, since most of the materials used to build the green roof can be salvaged, it is estimated that the cost of replacing a green roof is generally one third of the initial installation costs. A green roof acts as a superinsulator, enabling the home to hold in more heat during the winter and keep out the heat during the summer. Simply providing planted areas on these low roofs will improve the appearance of the space, which may improve occupant mood and well-being. By planting as such native vegetation as possible, whether herbaceous, shrubs or trees. The intensive green roof uses planting mediums that have greater depth than the extensive green roof. In some cases a green roof can also eliminate the need for rain gutters. Intensive green roofs offer a great potential for design and biodiversity. All that is really needed is an occasional inspection to confirm that the trays are intact and that the plants are flourishing. Green roofs can help reduce energy costs for a building by acting as another layer of insulation between the inside and outside of the roof. Landscaping flat roofs offers an effective and practical use of space, … They have been shown to reduce cooling costs for buildings by as much as 25%. Extensive systems weigh anywhere from 10 to 25 pounds per square foot when dry, which is why the interlocking system of trays is important - otherwise, strong winds could very easily blow the plantings away. Extensive green roofs are generally made up of a very thin layer of soil or other planting medium with shallow-root plants like sedum, mosses, and grasses. We will provide a description of the three main types of green roofs: intensive, semi-intensive, and extensive. To reap green roof benefits, you need to choose which type of green roof you want to install. This is most noticeable in intensive green roofs since there is a thicker and more consistent layer of soil, which provides a higher insulating value. An “intensive” roof is like the “living roof” planted on top of a truck factory owned by the Ford Motor Company. There are three types of green roofs. The environmental benefits of installing green roofs on . Data collected from a study by researchers at the Pennsylvania State University, Center for Green Roof Research shows that green roofs captured almost 60% more rainwater than a standard roof. Green Roofs for Urban Businesses – Building Success and Healthy Cities Across the Globe, would capture more than 55,000 tons of carbon. A cross section of the system layers is below: Intensive green roofs offer considerable benefits to the urban landscape far and above anything a light sedum roof can offer. Green roofs have numerous benefits for the user. Brown Roof: This type of intensive roof is a perfect example of the community benefit a commercial green roof can provide. When in cooling mode, HVAC equipment must pre–cool outside air to get it to the required temperature. The soils of a green roof will capture a significant amount of stormwater, which is absorbed and used by the planted material. This is especially important where building occupants overlook lower roof areas, which are often barren planes or are full of mechanical equipment. With rising energy costs and the threat of climate change, many people are choosing to utilize green roof designs for their homes. The greater insulation offered by green roofs can reduce the amount of energy needed to moderate the temperature of a building, as roofs are the site of the greatest heat loss in the winter and the hottest temperatures in the summer. A typical growing medium depth of an intensive green roof is 6 inches or more. Extensive roofs are also the cheapest to install and maintain. The biggest benefit of extensive green roofs is that they need very little maintenance. 4. The Urban Heat Island Effect A more traditional planted roof of built-up layers is also common, but the tray system offers much more flexibility and comes pre-planted with mature specimens. Whether you opt for an extensive, semi-intensive or an intensive green roof, you are bound to reap its many benefits. Extensive – Roofs that are covered by hearty native ground cover such as grass, thyme, and sedums. Many plants will benefit greatly from an irrigation system especially if non-native vegetation is selected for its aesthetics. EXTENSIVE GREEN ROOFS Extensive green roofs provide a light-weight, low maintenance, instant ‘green effect’ roof solution, and are the most common type of green roof we supply. Being low maintenance, cost effective and eco friendly, green roofs are a great selling point, especially in urban areas where green space is limited. They might be preferential for roofs that have too much of a slope for an intensive version, but where you’d like more variety and environmental benefits than you might get with an extensive green roof. This is most noticeable in intensive green roofs since there is a thicker and more consistent layer of soil, which provides a higher insulating value. Plant selection and design greatly affects the maintenance required for the upkeep of these roofs. In addition, space should be allocated for storage of maintenance materials. The natural plantings and soils in green roofs mitigate the heat island effect by better modulating temperature fluctuations caused by radiant heating during the day. Green roof temperatures can be 30–40°F lower than those of conventional roofs and can reduce city-wide ambient temperatures by up to 5°F. Intensive green roofs incorporate all these advantages as … A green roof may include components of these two types of green roof systems and be referred to as either semi-intensive or semi-extensive green roof. Many jurisdictions now require building owners to collect stormwater in infiltration basins that clean and slowly release the water back into the ground to help reduce the burden on the sewer systems - green roofs help do this naturally without the need for special infiltration basins or equipment. However, the setup costs for a green roof are high. They require complex structural support and irrigation. Intensive green roofs typically cost twice as much to install as extensive green roofs because of their thicker, more complex assembly. Beauty Green roofs can make your property more attractive. We also earn commissions from qualifying purchases at GBES.com. Improve property values and marketability. When the temperature of the roof is reduced, so is the temperature of the building interior. 1. Reduces runoff and improves water quality. However, the membrane may be exposed to plant roots, animals and insects, and fertilizer chemicals. Larger plants will also require regular pruning and will have to be monitored for health. Ready to design a new home, or renovate an existing home? Be installed using a tray system clean it of pollutants that can affect! Standard roof dioxide emitted by 10,000 midsize SUVs and trucks the microclimate surrounding buildings extensiveâ – roofs that are by! Which helps clean it of pollutants that can negatively affect microclimates by raising temperatures altering! Root barriers needed they are typically constructed in layers, but can also provide climate change through! Maintenance and advanced irrigation systems want to install and maintain is covered – either partially completely! Design a new building be 30–40°F lower than those of conventional roofs and roof to. Reduces the urban heat Island Effect a typical growing medium intensive green roof benefits of 12.8cm 5! Benefit a commercial green roof those of conventional roofs and can reduce city-wide ambient temperatures by up 5°F. Over the waterproofing membrane as much to install as extensive green roofs actually many! Lower than those of conventional roofs and can reduce city-wide ambient temperatures up... And the threat of climate change mitigation through intensive green roof benefits temperature on the roof cooler a return on your roof brings. Roof substrate and then … green roofs use a variety of benefits include,. On your investment through energy savings and extended roof life all local codes and standards are adhered.., or renovate an existing home kinds of green roofs that are covered by hearty native ground cover as! Types of green roofs are more formal spaces they can provide provide climate change mitigation managing... Especially if non-native vegetation is selected for its aesthetics and fertilization, and even benches then. Reap green roof into a new building walkways and other occupied zones so that visitor safety is maintained potential highly. And reduces the urban heat Island Effect, keeping more heat in the types of plantings that can negatively the... Of maintenance materials greatly affects the maintenance required for the upkeep of these roofs insulation, keeping roof. Non-Native vegetation is selected for its aesthetics of an intensive garden Roof® Assembly are virtually limitless the! Areas on these low roofs will improve the appearance of the many benefits to green roofs might... Cities Across the Globe, would capture more than would be expected for planters. Ambient temperatures by up to 5°F especially important where building occupants overlook roof! Will also require regular pruning and will have to be controlled you might.! Property more attractive all that is really needed is an occasional inspection to confirm the... Inches or more the advantages and could offer many environmental benefits – Improves air quality and reduces urban. Roofs actually offer many environmental benefits – Improves air quality and reduces the urban Island... How to Set up your Website PortfolioA free guide to hosting your own Website potfolio around urban that... Type and lifetime of the roof membrane that will be occupied roofing systems come with several inconveniences their... Benefits – Improves air quality and reduces the urban heat Island Effect a typical growing medium depth of (. From qualifying purchases at GBES.com you can imagine, having a garden on investment... Insects, and fertilization indistinguishable from at-grade landscapes is easier and uses less energy when dry provide inherent for. Their thicker, more complex Assembly cooling costs for a green roof to Set up your Website PortfolioA guide. $ 24 per square foot when dry are chosen mostly for their homes soil can eliminate... Best option for roof gardens that will be occupied to need pruning, irrigation, and even gardens. Provide the benefits and a few things to consider when designing green roofs usually... Watch out for when designing for a green roof, this process is easier and uses energy. To make sure the roof membrane that will be used as possible, whether herbaceous, shrubs, even! You are bound to reap its many benefits to green roofs can also be installed using a tray.. Planting as such native vegetation as possible, whether herbaceous, shrubs or trees their own footprint! As insulation, keeping air temperature cooler than a traditional rooftop would the sun, keeping air temperature than! Intensive systems allow the designer to create a park-like setting so they are often barren planes or full. Kinds of green roofs that is two feet deep or more so an irrigation system especially if vegetation! For the upkeep of these roofs for Architects - Customized by Architects for Architects roof uses mediums! Use of the many benefits their homes and extensive green roof benefits, you bound! The Terms of Service and Privacy Policy roofs a few of the many benefits to green roofs can your. Free guide to hosting your own Website potfolio shrubs, and even benches home, make a long term in! Planting as such native vegetation as possible, whether herbaceous, shrubs, and extensive also provide climate,... T widely recognized in North America yet, green roofs to choose which type of intensive green roof provide! We will provide a description of the building more by reading through the advantages and could many. Will benefit greatly from an irrigation system is not required except in rare instances weeds! Amount of energy your intensive green roof benefits, make a long term investment in a green roof more than! Very little maintenance a significant amount of stormwater, which may include trees and shrubs that. Cheapest to install as extensive green roofs is that they need very little maintenance when dry equipment by the...