‘Living Roof’ Installed at CA Campus

FRIDAY, MAY 1, 2020

In Redlands, California, a local university has installed what the local community believes to be the first known green roof on a residence in the area.

Specifically, the $60,000 roof was recently installed on Lewis Hall at the University of Redlands

About the Green Roof

According to Redlands Community News, the roof measures 700 square feet and weighs in at approximately 30 tons. In order to hold up the roof, the university reportedly used a commercial membrane complete with three 6-by-14-feet lam beans and 2-by-12-foot rafters and a drip system.

Within the green roof is a mixture of garden dirt, roughly 4.5 inches thick and is planted with 20 different species of plants.

In addition to the green roof, Lewis Hall also features water efficient landscaping, recycled carpeting, native plants and an integration of indoor-outdoor environments through placement of a courtyard.

“We recognize that long-term benefits outweigh the initial costs concerns for the following reasons: green roofs reduce energy costs...remove air particulates… and reduce and slow stormwater runoff in urban environments,” said Deborah O’Hara, Owner of All About Redlands, a public relations, marketing and advertising firm in Redlands who recently installed a green roof at her home. “To my knowledge, it is the first one on a residence in Redlands.”

Since being completed, the green roof is expected to be 75% more efficient than a traditional roof, minimalizing the use of air conditioners or heaters, according to a study conducted by the National Research Council of Canada.

In another study conducted by American Rivers, green roofs are also reported to be beneficial to the workforce in that they generate jobs for the public. According to AR, a $10 billion investment could create 190,000 jobs by building 48.5 billion square feet of green roof area.

Green Roof Push

Starting most notably in 2019 with New York City’s Climate Mobilization Act, green roofs related to radical energy efficient improvements across the nation have been making headway.

In April of last year, New York City council approved a package of bills and resolutions—known as the Climate Mobilization Act—intended for radical energy efficient improvements. The act requires that all new residential and commercial buildings in the city have green roofs made up of either plants, solar panels or small wind turbines—or a combination of all three.

In October, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced plans to conduct deep energy retrofits throughout the city.

Also last year, Nebraska updated the state’s energy codes for residential and commercial buildings for the first significant time in a decade, taking cues from both Boston and Ontario, which updated their regulations to get new construction as close to net zero as possible.


Tagged categories: Building Envelope; Colleges and Universities; Commercial / Architectural; Commercial Construction; Green roofs; NA; North America; Projects - Commercial; Residential

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