The Greening of Southie is a feature documentary about Boston’s first residential green building, and the skeptical workers who are asked to build it. From wheatboard cabinetry to recycled steel, bamboo flooring to dual-flush toilets, The Macallen Building is something different––a leader in the emerging field of environmentally friendly design. But Boston’s steel-toed union workers aren’t sure they like it….
Points keep accruing at the building site, as soil and succulents are hoisted onto the green roof…
They’ve got a succulent green roof? Nice.
The extensive green roof on the top of the building, shown in this photo, lowers heating and cooling loads in addition to managing stormwater. Credit: John Horner, John Horner Photography
Today the roof on the one-story building is a neat, green oasis, planted with an assortment of sturdy sedum, some fine-textured grasses and even a few edibles.
OK, but it must be the only one in all of Buffalo, right?
The Lanfears’ roof, built last spring and summer, is no longer unique in the neighborhood. This year, Urban Roots acquired a small shed with a living roof that was built with recycled materials from Buffalo ReUse for the Junior League Show House.
Who knew? Because you know, I’ve been to Buffalo, and I can’t say it was at the forefront of green trends.
Queens has generally lagged behind Manhattan in high-profile, high-rise green development for a variety of reasons- from lack of developer interest to its comparatively low-density. However, the borough’s origins as a manufacturing base for the rest of New York have left behind numerous low-rise former warehouses and factories with flat roof profiles.
I had wondered when Queens would get into the green building act.
They seem to be everywhere these days, and that can only mean one thing.
The 28,000-square-foot green roof at Ducks Unlimited in southern Manitoba is modeled after the surrounding Oak Hammock Marsh, with lots of short- and medium-size grasses and flowering plants, all native to the area.
To a duck or goose “it looks like habitat,” said Paula Grieef, a naturalist at the Oak Hammock Marsh Interpretive Centre. “We have ducks nesting on the roof every year, and last year for the first time we had a goose.”
They seem to like the native grasses better than the non-native succulents. Well, I never.
Life on the Balcony went to Knott’s Berry Farm, the other amusement park in Anaheim, and found green roofed trash cans! She let us post a picture, but I think there’ll be more photos on her blog soon, too.
Here’s another green roof project in Orange County.
The commissioners recently approved funding for a green roof for the Sustainable Technologies Building and a wastewater recycle system to serve that building and the (Central Carolina Community College’s) Chatham Community Library, which is also going up at the campus…. “The commissioners felt that sustainable technologies are a critical part of CCCC-Chatham,”
Of course, that will be Orange County, NC.
Well how about this one, another green roof in Orange County.
OK, so this must be from a green company based in Orange, CT. Shall we try one more time? One more attempt at a green roof in Orange County?
Duke Medicine’s commitment to sustainabililty has reached new heights with Duke University Hospital’s recently completed green roof project.
A green roof features vegetation planted over a waterproofing membrane. Besides being nice to look at, green roof vegetation can enhance the energy performance of a building by mitigating heat.
Well, at least they’ve established a succulent farm for new green roof projects in North Carolina.
Last year, Duke Medicine helped sponsor the creation of a local sedum farm in Orange County, North Carolina. The farm is growing the pre-cultivated mats with sedum species more indigenous to our climate.
There’s that Orange County again! Curse you google!
It’s about time those Stanfordies got with the program and developed a homegrown sedum green roof.
“We were coming from a home with no insulation, and the idea of a green roof — literally a succulent garden growing out of a horticultural mixture spread directly onto the surface — eliminating the need for air conditioning was a huge attraction,” Melissa said….
(They) chose several varieties of sedums and simper vivums, both of which spread, as well as non-invasive miniature ice plants and aloes. “I wanted to create an imitation of a larger landscape,” Schneider said.
“It takes about a year for everything to fill in,”
Alas, no photos. I think they meant Sempervivums, not that there’s anything wrong with simper succulents too.
The Westridge Upper School Sustainable Science Building is the first independent school in the San Gabriel Valley to build a LEED-certified green building…
Among the green features are… a green roof that will be planted with succulents.
Always with the succulents, never with the cactus. Cactus would make a very good green roof planting material, but people seem to prefer them some sempervivums. And in Pasadena, no less, where cactus would thrive in the hot sun. Maybe if we started a write-in campaign they could add in some prickly pears, and get some delicious tunas out of it in the long run.
Green shoots actually start to appear in the Oregon Metropolis’ roofscape.
The City of Roses is being transformed into the City of Sedums as nearly 300 Portland rooftops are now blanketed in the drought-tolerant succulents.
And as rooftops in Oregon are going green, some of the businesses that design, build, and landscape ecoroofs are having an economic mini boom.
Don’t care for the economic benefits? Here’s another great benefit for your consideration.
In addition to stormwater management, urban heat island reduction and good looks, ecoroofs can provide habitat for various urban wildlife, particularly birds and insects. Soil and vegetation attract pollinators and other insects, which in turn attract birds. Multiple species have been documented feeding, resting and even nesting on Portland ecoroofs.
Charles Martino , Operations Manager for Cooke’s Gardens stands under the green roof on their gazebo at Williamsburg Botanical Garden in James City County….
The garden is a “green roof” of 250 sedums planted on top of an outdoor pavilion. This fall the sedums are at their peak, covering the 200-square-foot roof with lush greenery. Prolific bloomers like ice plant and portulaca add more splashes of color. All are… succulent(s).
As usual, rather than read the article all the way through to figure out where this Williamsburg in James City County is, I’ll do a lovely little internet search, this time using answers.com – and we have Virginia. No surprise there. I was hoping for Utah, but it wasn’t to be.
Growing succulents for green roofs is becoming a big business. We’ve sold some, but you really need to work in large volumes, and we’re too urban for that.
On the other hand, Southern Maryland seems like it would be the perfect place.
John Shepley shows one of the many green roof plants grown on the farm. (Photo by Maryland Newsline’s Lindsay Gsell)
Rows and rows of small sedums, delosperma and other green roof plants sit below, soaking up the sun in their newly insulated home.
These plants have been the sole focus and cash crop of the farm since 1998. Nearly a million of them are grown each year for green roofs around the country, says Shepley, a former electrical engineer who is now co-owner of the business.
The National Aquarium in Baltimore, the Walter Reed Community Center in Washington, D.C., and Radio Shack’s World Headquarters in Fort Worth, Texas, are among the farm’s more than 400 clients.
Not all green roofs have succulents (though of course the best ones do, in my opinion).
Project Name: Buttner-Chang Residence Year: 2006 Owner: Ted Buttner and Rosemary Chang Location: Sunol, CA, USA
The client requested a planting design which would blend and not compete with the beauty of the natural landscape. Sunol enjoys hot dry summers with frequent wind, but traditional greenroof succulents would not blend with the native landscape…
I chose plantings of mostly evergreen ornamental grasses for all roofs (main house, office, garage). The native landscape is comprised of summer dormant grasses, but to minimize fire hazard and for best aesthetic appeal, we chose non-native grasses that looked good year-round, could take the summer heat, drying winds, and importantly, summer irrigation. Since the client enjoyed succulents, we chose to flank the entry doors with more colorful succulents…
It’s a hospital, which seems to be a good location for green roofing, since the roofs are often overlooked by more patient rooms higher up. As usual, we have a sedum roof, a “Pre-Vegetated Sedum Mat” with some grasses and small trees too.
Project Name: Providence Everett Medical Center
Location: Everett, WA, USA
Building Type: Healthcare
Size: 13700 sq.ft.
Access: Inaccessible, Private
Not the prettiest of green roof projects. No doubt it will fill in and be a better attraction for the patients over time.
My brother is working on a hospital project in New York. I wonder if he’s got a green roof going?
(T)he renovation of West Virginia University’s Brooks Hall began in 2006… A few years later, 85 percent of the roof is vegetated, adding a splash of green to both the downtown campus and the university’s coffers….
The vegetation is known as sedums and succulents. They act as natural absorbents, holding, filtering and easing water into the drainage systems.
Some green roofs can be far simpler to create than traditional roof gardens. Volunteers from Cook + Fox installed the New York City architectural firm’s roof themselves using Green Paks. The polyethylene bags, marketed by St. Louis-based Green Roof Blocks, contain low-maintenance plants and can be laid out with no preparation beyond rolling out a layer of waterproof material that controls drainage and blocks the intrusion of roots into roof structures.
If you click through to the article to learn what plants are being used in New York, you learn nothing of the sort. Sure, they mention Sedums, and talk about going native, but the article is more about building in Vancouver. Whatever, it’s a nice picture to “borrow.”
After five weeks of planning, workers planted more than 600 bushes, succulents, flowers and grasses of 42 species on the soil-covered roof of the green building next to Carmel Middle School on Wednesday morning. The roof was specially constructed to support 6 inches of soil, vegetation and a special system to recycle rainwater to irrigate the plants….
It joins an organic garden, an outdoor kitchen, demonstration gardens and greenhouses, an amphitheater for ornithology, and owl boxes….
Most of the plants on the new roof are habitat plants, chosen to feed and house insects and birds. (VERN FISHER/The Herald)
The green roof phenomenon is spreading. Succulents are saving the day, yet again. The Phila. Inquirer writes about local college buildings that have gone green.
Princeton University’s first “green roof” on a dorm (in the newly rebuilt Butler College housing complex) includes monitors for students to track energy performance and storm water runoff compared with coventional roofs….
The sleek, 17-story Millennium Hall is Drexel University’s first green dorm. It features concrete walls that don’t need paint, windows that reflect heat but allow light indoors, and a lobby floor made of recycled tires. A “green roof” (actually on a one-story platform attached to the building) is planted with succulents.
The article doesn’t have pictures, but that won’t stop me. I’m armed with google, photoshop, a text editor, and the fastest fingers to type a blog post in Berkeley.
Engineer returns to lead Butler’s construction. Nick Caputo ’73 on a green roof of one of Butler College’s new dorms.
This residence hall… will incorporate many environmentally sustainable design features, including a 3,000 square-foot green roof to reduce storm-water run-off and heat-island effect and a rain screen panel system envelop to provide solar shading.
With a curvy green roof… Wave House has a double-skin polycarbonate glass facade and a vegetated surface to shield against summer heat and winter cold.
According to architect Patrick Nadeau, the plants, which include… succulents… were selected for “both for their aesthetic qualities as well as their natural resistance and minimal need for for maintenance.”
The italics are in the original, tho’ I don’t know why. High concept architecture.
Here’s an article from the Baltimore Sun about green roofs in Maryland that features a green roof in Tacoma, WA. Why couldn’t they send a photographer to get a picture of a local project?
MCT / Janet Jensen
Vivian deZwager sits on the roof of her house, overlooking her green-roof garage in Tacoma, Wash. She planted succulents there and created a design using plants and broken ceramic and terra cotta pieces as mulch….
(T)he roof of Port Coquitlam’s new Walmart Supercentre was quiet and serene. To the east the view of the coastal mountains was spectacular and the lush foliage on the banks of the Pitt River created a wall of green. But it was the 220,000 hand-planted sedums and succulents that were taking root on Walmart’s roof that drew one’s attention.
The tiny, colourful, drought-tolerant plants that more-rightly belonged in rock crevices or an alpine meadow stretched out as far as the eye could see.
Sounds like Canada. Let’s look up this Port Coquitlam. And… it’s in British Columbia, so you know it’s gonna be pretty.
Well, the park’s new gym equipment is pretty.
And the trails are nice and neat and cleaned up too.
Some 21,000 succulents call the roof of New York City’s Con Edison’s three-story Learning Center in Long Island City, Queens….
Green roofs – roofs that are covered with vegetation -are hot, and for good reason.
According to research conducted by Con Edison and Columbia University on Con Edison’s Long Island City green roof, the average winter heat loss was some 34% lower under the green roof than under the black roof, while the summer heat gain was 84% lower on the green roof than under the black roof.
34 and 84 are some good numbers. Here’s some more:
Berlin has between 5-30% of roof space greened in different parts of the city at the time of writing.
That’s odd. Between 5-30% is a very broad range. That’s not a good number at all. I’m sorry.
Germany adds about 11 million M2 of green roofs each year.
Now that’s a good number. I think. I don’t really know how big 11 million M2 is. Is it bigger than the moon? Bigger than Yosemite? Bigger than Chicago? Bigger than Central Park in New York? Bigger than a bedbug?
The design is a fulfillment of the possibilities of CROP CIRCLES! and that’s cool too. There’s a crabapple orchard, a vegetable amphitheater, espaliered fruit trees, and more. Reach out and pick a piece.