Turning Urban Rooftops into Green Spaces

Rooftops can be used as green spaces for agriculture, farming, or planting. Green spaces in urbanized areas promote sustainability and provide various benefits for the local environment. Building owners can consider greenhouses for sale in order to reduce expenses when investing in a green roof. A rooftop greenhouse will require the same mode of operation as that of traditional commercial greenhouses.

There are various other legal, structural, and practical considerations involved when creating a green roof in an urban space.

Rooftop Real Estate

Urban cities are becoming denser, taller, and busier than they have ever been. As such, city dwellers and developers are forced to compete for limited available space in the city. The continued increase in infrastructure and population essentially turns land into a valuable commodity.

Roofs represent the last urban frontier of a city center as they are one of the last places where space has not yet been maximized. Urban cities are exploring new ways to use their rooftops to promote green energy.

Common Uses of Rooftops

Rooftops can serve social, recreational, and industrial purposes. Many roof decks include bars, pools, and dining areas, or soccer pitches and running tracks. Other businesses choose to include smog-eating roof tiles and wind turbines to maximize their building’s roof space. Roofs that receive plenty of sunlight can fuel agriculture and solar power needs.

Reduction of Stormwater Runoff

rooftop gardening

Stormwater runoff refers to water from rain or snow flowing from the roof and onto the street and ground. Heavy and continuous rain can damage stormwater infrastructure and waterways.

Green roofs with plants and soil can absorb, collect, and reuse rainwater for watering plants outside a building or for flushing toilets inside. Green roof growing allows a portion of the water to return to the atmosphere through evaporation and transpiration. Any stormwater that runs off a green roof is also cleaner than those from traditional roofs.

Urban Heat Island Effect

The urban heat island effect explains why cities are several degrees warmer than areas in the surrounding countryside. The effect states it is because of heat-absorbing materials like asphalt and concrete on roadways. Trees and green spaces can counter this and provide a cooling effect because of their ability to absorb shortwave radiation. A city’s temperature is more effectively reduced with networks of small green spaces than by a single park of an equivalent size.

Other Benefits

Rooftops can be designed to provide refuge for birds and insects that struggle to survive. They are also good spaces for growing different kinds of vegetables, fruits, herbs, and salad leaves where the region’s climate is suitable. Greenhouse projects are especially useful for urban communities that have limited access to locally grown produce or do not have the space to grow these crops.

While green roofs are not the only way to promote sustainability, they are efficient and take up only a limited amount of space in an urban community. Green spaces incorporated into rooftops across the city provide economic and environmental benefits for building users and for the community at large.

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