Planted Roofs

Hairy buildings

The roof is the fifth facade of a building and can play an important, but nevertheless often neglected, roll for the building and its surroundings. In many cases it takes account for a large part of the total outside area of a building and above that the roof is the part of the building directed the most to the sun. A possibility to make use of the roof instead of neglecting it is to make a planted roof. Besides the technical characteristics it seems that with this choice the 'natural' character plays a roll. Can you think of a better way to integrate the building with nature than by simply putting the nature that was replaced by the building on top of that building?

A planted roof mainly consists of the following parts:


The environmental advantages of a planted roof are:


That a planted roof can also be a smart way to cut on the budget is illustrated by the following example:

In 1999 Architect William McDonough entered into an agreement with Ford Motor Company to redesign its 85-year-old Rouge River facility. The roof of the 100,000 m2 Dearborn truck assembly plant was covered with more than 40,000 m2 of sedum. The sedum retains and cleanses rain water, as well as moderating the internal temperature of the building, to save energy. The roof is part of an $18 million rainwater treatment system designed to clean 76 million m3 of rainwater annually, and sparing Ford from a $50 million mechanical treatment facility. 

JV & DDL

Books:

Peter G. Teeuw, Christophe Ravesloot: Begroeide daken in Nederland, Delft, 1998 (NL)

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