Technical and engineering issues in green roof retrofit

John Wiley & Sons
Publication Type:
Green Roof Retrofit Building Urban Resilience, 2016, 1, 1 pp. 14 - 36 (24)
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Retrofitting the existing stock of buildings is imperative, as only 1-2% is added annually to the total stock of buildings, and around 87% of the buildings that we will have by 2050 are already built (Kelly, 2009). With regards to green roofs, the overriding issue is one of structural capacity to accommodate the additional loads that a retrofit brings. This chapter considers the technical and engineering considerations that stakeholders need to consider when evaluating Green Roof retrofit potential. For example, existing structure, load bearing capacity, access, power and water supply, orientation and exposure to sunlight and overshadowing, and occupational health and safety. In short how to determine what type of Green Roof is suited to the structure. Using some typical building types – illustrative case studies show how to determine whether an existing roof has sufficient load bearing capacity to support a retrofit Green Roof. Initially it is worth considering whether the roof is intended to have people using it regularly and spending extended periods of time there. Furthermore does the owner have a preference for a thermal or a bio-diversity or a stormwater roof? If so, this will affect the roof design and the depth of substrate and hence, the additional dead loads the original roof will need to support.
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