Green Roof in the City 2016

HOUSE NAME
Green Roof in the City
Address
St Kilda East VIC 3183
Open
10am to 4pm
Housing Type
Community Garden
Project Type
Retrofit
Number of bedrooms
1
Number of bathrooms
1

From the street, the white-painted brick three-storey 1950s block of flats in St. Kilda East looks pretty similar to its neighbours. But head up the back stairs to the roof and a surprise is in store – a verdant surprise, waving gently in the breeze.

Come and visit the 646 square metres of retrofitted green roof, covering three-quarters of the roof space. Surrounded by the existing brickwork parapet, the green roof includes two lawn areas, planter boxes for vegies, washing lines, a network of paths and three decks, but most of the space is given over to native plantings. The only non-natives are rosemary and lavender, to attract bees and assist biodiversity.

Almost a year after installation, the garden is thriving. It absorbs rainwater and reduces stormwater runoff, and provides thermal insulation: It makes an enormous difference to the temperature in the top floor apartments.

On top of its environmental and thermal benefits, the green roof is already proving hugely positive socially. Before, the complex didn’t have a sense of community because there was no communal space. Now it’s a place for relaxing, entertaining friends, and for kids to play; in summer a residents’ outdoor cinema night was held, and there are plans for yoga on the roof.

Benefits include: insulates apartments below reducing energy costs, captures rain water, reduces flash flooding events, increases biodiversity, reduces air temperatures by absorbing heat rather than reflecting it back into the atmosphere and more. In addition to the green roof the complex had tackled a number of sustainability improvements, including installing LED lighting and insulating under the green roof.

What’s next? The residents would like to work out the best way to use the rainwater they collect at ground level to water the garden, and they are talking to the City of Port Phillip about installing solar electricity or maybe hot water. They are also keen to investigate keeping bees.

Tours will be conducted on the half hour and will be limited to 25 for each tour.

SUSTAINABLE FEATURES

Years Open
2016
Recycled and reused
Timber
Sustainable materials
The Green Roof itself is there because the whole concept is sustainable.
Insulation - Other
Green Roof
Connected to gas?
No
Passive heating cooling
The Green Roof cools apartments is summer and makes them warmer in winter.
Water harvesting and saving
Green Roof captures rain water in its substrate.
Garden / Outdoors
Drip irrigation
Water wise plants
Community garden
Native plants
Green roofs