Green roof at the GSK building

June 2, 2020, by sustainablenottingham

Gardens in the Sky

Did you know that we have more than 10 green roofs across a number of our building on both University Park and Jubilee Campus. Green roofs aren’t anything new and we have been covering roofs with vegetation for centuries, whilst those early installation provided protection from the elements and good insulation they were neither waterproof nor have any systems to keep out unwanted burrowing wildlife. The modern trend started when green roofs were developed in Germany in the 1960s, and has since spread to many countries
A green roof or living roof is a roof of a building that is partially or completely covered in vegetation. There are typically two types of green roofs they can be either intensive, with greater soil depth providing for a wide range of larger plantings or extensive, with shallower soil depth suitable for only low-growth, low maintenance vegetation, such as sedum. Most of the ones we have at the University are extensive green roofs.

So what are the advantages of Green roofs?

Longer lifespan of the roofing: a green layer can protect the roofing against UV radiation, snow and ice. By avoiding exposure to extremely high and low temperatures, the roofing will last two to three times longer than with a traditional roof.

Reduced Energy: Nature is very good a regulating temperature and a green roof can reduce heating demand by adding mass and thermal resistance value, effectively providing an insulating layer against heat and cold.

Sound insulation: the green roof – and in particular the substratum – absorbs both impact noise, such as from rain and hail, and environmental noise.

Improvement of ambient air quality: Plants absorb pollutants and emit oxygen, improving air quality and helping the environment.

Reduced water problems: Green roofs decrease the total amount of runoff and slow the rate of runoff from the roof. 30 to 50% of rainwater is filtered and can be absorbed by the vegetation layer, gradually releasing it back into the atmosphere thorough condensation and transpiration, while retaining pollutants in their soil.

Increased biodiversity: Even in high-rise urban settings, it has been found that green roofs can attract beneficial insects, birds, bees and butterflies. Rooftop greenery complements green areas within the city by providing stepping stones between green areas.

An additional environmental benefit of greens roofs is that they sequester carbon. Carbon is the main component of plant matter and is naturally absorbed by plant tissue.

So where are our Green roofs?

Green roof on GSK building

At Jubilee Campus green roofs can be found on:

  • Business School North
  • School of Computer Science
  • The Exchange Building
  • DLRC
  • The Atrium
  • The Dearing Building
  • Romax building
  • GSK – Carbon Neutral Laboratory

At University Park roofs can be found on:

  • The Orchard Hotel
  • Maths Building
  • George Green library

To find our more about green roofs included World green roof day take a look at :

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