The amazing Megan of Megamoog recently photographed this bizarre-looking green roof and shared it on her Flickr photostream. Though I have been feeling like there are just too many stories about green rooves in the news these days, this one had such a cute, alien, submarine-spaceship look that I had to find out more, so I asked Megan for the scoop. It turns out that this is no average green roof, but something much more wonderful.
Megan wrote, “I recently went the San Francisco’s Academy of Sciences. Atop this building is a garden, which provides visitors with a spectacular arrangement of plants and flowers mostly indigenous to the golden state. There are 1.2 million native plants on this 2.5 acre garden roof. These plants help save energy at the academy by keeping the building cool. I believe that there are two hills on the roof— one above the planetarium and another above the rain forest exhibition (which was sadly closed during my visit).”
Megan also found a fantastically detailed article about this roof on Phillip’s Garden Blog, which looks like a great resource. Phillip looked at the Academy of Sciences building, the green roof, and the surrounding gardens in detail, explaining the efforts of the architects to make this project – just completed in 2008 – as environmentally sustainable as possible. He took lots of nice photos.
Since Sara and I are actually native Californians and do go visit family in the SF area occasionally, maybe we will get to see this sight / site with our own eyes soon.
I’d be curious to hear how people in other cities – Berlin, New York and beyond – experience green rooves. Are they big in your town? Are the something eye-catching and spectacular, or just a normal part of the architecture? I know the ones I’ve noticed here are very low-key – just some mosses, lichens and low-lying grasses.