10 KEY BENEFITS OF ROOF GARDENS

1. ROOF GARDENS SUBSTANTIALLY INCREASE PROPERTY VALUES

A roof garden substantially enhances re-sale or rental values. It raises property values.  The most obvious advantage of a roof garden is as a valuable amenity that enhances the worth of the structure it occupies for a relatively modest expenditure. It is additional or reclaimed usable space. Independent researchers in London (Marsh and Parson's) have found that a roof garden or balcony typically adds 10-25% more value to the property in high-end neighborhoods. 

roof garden increase real estate value

2.  A ROOF GARDEN CAN INCREASE THE LIFE EXPECTANCY OF YOUR ROOF

One of the great benefits of roof gardens, vertical gardens and green roofs is that by protecting the underlying roof covering, they extend the life of the existing roof fabric by up to 200%. A green roof protects the roof membrane from climatic extremes and physical abuse, thereby greatly increasing the life expectancy of the roof. 

This existing roof is protected by a rubber drainage mat, with pedestals supporting the lightweight pavers. The actual roof is completely protected from climatic extremes.  In the event of any roof repair, these pavers can be lifted up with ease to accommodate any maintenance.

This existing roof is protected by a rubber drainage mat, with pedestals supporting the lightweight pavers. The actual roof is completely protected from climatic extremes.  In the event of any roof repair, these pavers can be lifted up with ease to accommodate any maintenance.

3. PROPERTY TAX CREDIT INCENTIVES FOR GREEN ROOFS

New York City recently passed a city bylaw that rewards building-owners who cover 50 per cent of available rooftop space with a green roof with a one-year property tax credit of up to $100,000. The credit would be equal to $4.50 per square-foot of roof area that is planted with vegetation, or approximately 25 per cent of the typical costs associated with the materials, labor, installation and design of the green roof. More and more municipalities and other government agencies are providing incentives that can help offset the cost of a green roof.

roof garden property tax incentive

 4. A ROOF GARDEN INSULATES AGAINST HEAT AND COLD

Buildings with roof gardens lose 30% less heat in the winter, are cooler in the summer, and offer year-round sound insulation. Green roofs can improve the thermal resistance of the roof assembly throughout the year, especially in summer months by helping to reduce cooling costs, saving fuel. Reduced noise levels from typical extensive green roofs (3” - 4” growing media) reduce reflective sound by up to 3 dB and improve sound insulation by up to 8 dB

In 1991 As part of an EPA study and initiative to combat the urban heat island effect and to improve urban air quality, Mayor Richard M. Daley and the City of Chicago used City Hall as a showcase to promote green roofs.

In 1991 As part of an EPA study and initiative to combat the urban heat island effect and to improve urban air quality, Mayor Richard M. Daley and the City of Chicago used City Hall as a showcase to promote green roofs.

5. GREEN ROOFS AND ROOF GARDENS RETAIN AND MANAGE STORMWATER

Stormwater retention: green roofs absorb up to 75% of rainfall, thus reducing the runoff dramatically, and lowering the risk of urban flooding. Depending on the roof garden design, a green roof can typically reduce storm water run-off by 50 to 90%. Additionally, the peak flow volume is greatly reduced and the peak flow period is delayed by as much as 4 hours, minimizing the impact on existing sewer systems.

Water sensitive urban design slows stormwater runoff and improves filtration and infiltration.

Water sensitive urban design slows stormwater runoff and improves filtration and infiltration.

5. PROVIDE SOCIAL BENEFITS

Green roofs expand the usefulness of buildings via patios, gardens and vistas.  Planting gardens, both at ground level and in the sky, provide not only great spaces for relaxation and enjoyment, but also are great to look at! 

roof gardens in manhattan

 7. IMPROVE AIR QUALITY

Plants produce oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from the air. They also trap up to 85% of airborne particulates on their leaf surfaces. Plants, soil, and air trapped in the soil are great acoustic insulators, too.

 

8. ELEVATED GARDENS MODIFY URBAN MICRO-CLIMATES

Cities, of concrete and tarmac, retain heat and create "urban heat islands", as much as 10F warmer than surrounding suburbs. Plants, through transpiration, directly cool the air, and can reduce surface roof temperatures by as much as 75F in summer.

 

9. ROOF GARDENS PROVIDE DIVERSE HABITATS

Roof gardens, when planted with indigenous flora, can provide important habitats for native bird and insect populations. Green roofs create biodiversity.

 10. LEED CERTIFICATION

Opportunity to assist in achieving LEED certification in several categories contributes to the attractiveness of building a roof garden.

Within a dense urban environment one needs green space. Gardens are an ethereal world - they should be calming spaces and transport you to another state of mind.