Vegetative roofs, or rooftop gardens, have been around for a long time, but up until recently they commonly failed due to issues in planning, testing and technical knowledge. Their numerous benefits have made vegetative roofs a feasible option for commercial facilities.
Extended Roof Life
Plants, soil and other covered components of the system offer protection from the elements, such as deterioration brought on by the sun’s UV rays. A vegetative roof minimizes cracks and splits by protecting the roof membrane. The changing temperatures in some areas of the country may cause expansion and contraction of the membrane, creating damage that can lead to leaks. These effects can be reduces or even eliminated with a vegetative roof.
In addition, a vegetative roof over the membrane can reduce the risk of hail or wind damage. Airborne objects during strong storms, such as tree branches, are less likely to penetrate the roof when.
A roof’s life can be extended by as much as 200 to 300 percent, backed by a manufacturers’ warranty up to 30 years for the entire system.
Increased Property Value
Installing a vegetative roof may make a building more marketable, if a facility manager plans to sell the building in the near future. If potential buyers have a use for additional outdoor space, garden rooftops are often appealing. It’s hard to put an exact figure on aesthetics, but improving a building’s appearance sets it apart from others in the area and lead to a quicker sale.
Reduced Energy Costs
The thickness of the vegetative system will create an insulating layer, helping to reduce heating and cooling costs for the building. The amount of energy you can save depends on location and climate. Evaporation and insulation can bring down the roof temperature to the ambient temperature, and in some cases even lower.
Studies have shown that cooling costs for a one-story building can be reduced by as much as 25 to 50 percent with a vegetative roof. In the winter, the layered system can serve as a barrier between colder layers and the heated space below. The heating savings will not be as great as the cooling savings. However, even with snow cover, the system acts effectively as additional insulation.
It may not be a building value, but having a rooftop garden is a great perk for those who occupy a building. It has been found that employee creature comfort and productivity are related. Companies such as Apple and Google provide everything from employee transportation and in-house child care. If employees have a place to comfortably get fresh air and sunshine during a break, it can increase their productivity for the business. Some companies may even hold meetings on the roof.
Showalter offers a variety of vegetative roofing options. If you are looking to save money and energy in your building, as well as increase its value, contact us to learn more today!
Courtesy of facilitiesnet