Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Winter 2012 - (Page 16)

POLICY & STANDARDS GREEN ROOF AND WALL PERFORMANCE STANDARDS A NEW PERFORMANCE AND RATING SYSTEM FOR GREEN ROOFS AND WALLS WAS ANNOUNCED AT CITIESALIVE IN PHILADELPHIA BY: DAVID YOCCA & LOIS VITT SALE he benefits green roofs and living walls bring to the built environment are more than skin deep. However, many new structures and retrofits are specified with green roofs and walls without consideration of the full range of their benefits, and then fail to achieve the greatest potential value for their investors and constituents. Too often, living systems are considered and then value-engineered out of projects because they are not fully integrated into the mechanical and social aspects of the design. Simply, they become an alternative surface material. To address the lack of recognition of the full potential of living architecture, and to ensure the continued development of these living systems are based on high quality, performance based criteria, a new, comprehensive set of performance standards is currently under development by GRHC. This tool or system is intended as a resource for those involved in the de- T sign, specification, purchasing, regulation, or management of green roofs and walls. These standards will help green building professionals identify and promote the wide range of potential benefits and performance enhancements living roof and wall technology can offer through a more comprehensive, integrated approach to conceptualization, programming, integrated systems design, implementation, and long-term operations planning. It is anticipated that these performance standards will then form the foundation for a rating system that will provide measurement and quantification of living building systems. COLLABORATIVE Based on input from a variety of sources and discussion with numerous green roof and green wall professionals over the past two years, it is clear there is a need for a method to more clearly articulate specific benefits of various applications of living architecture in built applications. It is also clear the need for this type of tool is urgent and immediate. The creation of useful system is a significant undertaking; in order to be most effective, this tool will be developed in an open, inclusive process, and involve a wide range of living architecture design, research, regulatory, and industry professionals. USGBC’s LEED Green Building Rating System has served to promote highperformance building practices, and the Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES) tool being developed by ASLA, Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center, and the U.S. Botanic Garden promises to do even more for a wider range of projects. These green roof/wall performance standards would be developed to directly support these and other voluntary initiatives. While there are multiple ways living systems interface with these rating tools, there is a lack of performance metrics quantifying their efficacy. The development of this performance standard can be a stand-alone certification or an alternative path to compliance within either LEED or SITES. Vegetated systems that cover a portion of a built structure can provide an enormous range of benefits, including: • Stormwater retention • Stormwater quality improvements • Aesthetics • Air quality improvement • Waste diversion • Fire retardation • Biodiversity/habitat • Energy conservation • Noise reduction • Integration with other building/site components • Research applications • Educational applications (job training) • Community involvement/participation • Reduction of urban heat island effect • Low/ecologically sensitive maintenance practices • Human use and enjoyment (visual, partial, full access) A committee is being organized to set the structure of the overall standard/rating system and to contemplate the minimum LIVING ARCHITECTURE MONITOR / WINTER 2012 / 16

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Winter 2012

Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Winter 2012
From the Founder
New Kid on the Green Roof
New Incentives for Green Roofs
On the Roof with Ben Flanner
Award Winning Green Roof and Wall Projects Represent!
Awards of Excellence Profiles
CitiesAlive 2012 – Building a Legacy of Outstanding Performance in Chicago!
Recognizing the Pioneer that was Malcolm Wells
Green roof and wall performance standards volunteers required!
Plant Profile: Thymus
Project Profile: Green Wall Maintenance Madness
GRP in Focus: Mary Ann Uhlmann
Project Profile: Healthy Haven for Community Members
A Positive Outlook for Urban Greening of Vacant Lots
A Green Space is a Clean Space
The Ambassador Program
Professional Calendar
New Corporate Members
GRHC Buyers Guide
Back to Planning’s Roots

Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Winter 2012