Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Modern Green Roof Saves an Ancient Structure

What do you do when you find an ancient city (5000 years old) and need to protect it?

In the 1930s, after realizing the value of the Skara Brae site (found in 1850) put a glass roof over the best preserved structure. Thinking that glass would protect to carvings inside, as well as allow easy viewing actually led to more problems.

Historic Scotland
, the group that maintains Skara Brae as World Heritage Site, decided to take action. Working with Flat Roof Design & Technology (FDT), a 30 sq. meter green roof was built. A green roof was chosen because it prevented sunlight from entering the structure, as well as maintaining a fairly constant temperature and humidity. FDT's Rhepanol hg is the membrane that protects the inside of the buildings from water, sand, and other natural hazards.

In addition to the protection of the carvings and the structures themselves, the green roof also blends the site naturally into the surround landscape. This visual enhancement encourages tourists to visit not just for historic significance, but also for the surrounding beauty.

I would like to thank for writing the article this was base upon.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Green Roofs, French Style

The French have always been know for their keen style and sense of design. This also now extends to green roofs! Although I haven't spent much time researching the green roofs of France, this one in particular is quite striking. FREE SHIPPING on orders over $50.00 at

Historial de la Vendée, in Lucs-sur-Boulogne, is part of a larger estate, including a period home, gardens, and other structures.

The museum itself, pictured above, was completed in 2006 and houses exhibits detailing the history of Vendee from prehistoric times until the present. The museum is built of concrete, glass, and from the translated version of its website:
  • 8 000 m² green roof
  • 6 500 m² floor area
  • 1000 m² of windows
  • 464 tonnes of steel for the frame
  • 19 hectares of natural spaces
Below is my interpretation of the description of the roof itself, as the translation isn't quite clear. $20 Off AeroGardens

The roof is stainless steel, topped with triangular steel bed, filled with pre-grown plants from the Black Forest. The roof is composed of a mixture of plants which give the appearance of a prairie, thus integrating the building into the natural scenery.

This appears to be both a beautiful and functional structure that I would like to visit. The entrance fees are very reasonable. For 2008-2009, it is 8 euros per adult over 26, 5 euros for those under 26, and free for children under 18. More information can be found at their website:

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