Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - 4

ings and protection and life extension of the roof membrane, saving money on reroofing
over time. But some of the biggest potential returns come from human experience. In an
average office, for example, the investment made in people's salaries and benefits might
be 100x the cost of utility bills. Studies have repeatedly shown increased satisfaction and
productivity when people have views of nature. Taking a short break in a natural setting
can reduce stress levels for hours afterward. So if a green roof is visible or accessible,
we've seen that the small uptick in productivity has the potential to pay back the entire
investment in the green roof in a year or less, whereas the utility savings would tend to
take decades. Another scenario where green roofs can pay back quickly is in new buildings that are subject to stormwater management or open space regulations. In some
policy environments and on certain sites, it is actually cheaper to build a building with a
green roof than to meet the regulations without one.
SWP: From your private sector work with Walmart and your Masters Degree, you've identified
air conditioning efficiency increases as an area for potential cost savings. How does that work and
how significant is this?
KW: Right. Most people think of a green roof as simply adding insulation, but it's much
more dynamic than that. Thermal mass from the growing medium is one of the major
factors at play, making the roof absorb heat from the sun and hold it after the sun goes
down. Likewise, the " coolth " from the night is also held through the morning hours.
This smooths out peak cooling and heating demand for buildings through limiting
heat flow through the roof, but that has limited benefit for multi-storey buildings.

What I found in my field research at the
Nueva School in California is that green
roofs also tend to create a tempered
microclimate in the air above the roof.
The tempering was the greatest around 1
foot above the roof and began to fall off
around 3 feet. We corroborated this finding at Walmart's Chicago store, which was
built with half cool white roof and half
living green roof. The air temperatures at
the rooftop air intakes on the green roof
side (around 3 feet above the roof) were
significantly cooler in summer, and were
also warmer in winter. This means that
even tall buildings can see cooling and
heating savings from a green roof if the
air conditioning systems have air intakes
close to the green roof.
SWP: From a private sector perspective, would
you please describe what you've found regarding real estate related value?

" FUNDS PROVIDED TO INCENTIVIZE GREEN ROOF
CONSTRUCTION ARE WELL-SPENT TOWARD THE
PUBLIC GOOD, AND WILL ALSO TEND TO GENERATE
FURTHER ECONOMIC BENEFITS AS PROPERTY VALUES
(AND THUS TAX REVENUES) RISE AND GREEN JOBS
ARE GENERATED. "
- KIRSTIN WEEKS

installation * maintenance * design consulting * hardscaping
furnishings * custom fabrications * rooftop farming systems

LIVING ARCHITECTURE MONITOR / WINTER 2020 / 4

recovergreenroofs.com

LIVINGARCHITECTUREMONITOR.COM


http://www.recovergreenroofs.com http://www.LIVINGARCHITECTUREMONITOR.COM

Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020

Table of Contents
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - IP
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - Cover1
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - Cover2
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - Table of Contents
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - AD1
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - 1
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - 2
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - 3
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - 4
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Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - 34
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - Cover3
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - Cover4
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor Winter 2020 - 42
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https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2013summer
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