• Green Roofs

    Shape Architecture continues to design projects of all types and sizes incorporating green roofs and brown roofs.  Through the practice Director Jason Wren we offer twenty years of experience in designing green roofs, ten of which are in the portfolio of Shape Architecture.  These range in type from intensive grass roofs to sedum roofs and brown rubble roofs.

    In terms of the range of project type, we have designed green roofs for schools, community organisations, private residential projects and offices.

    In each instance the environmental roof adds value in terms of its appearance , it’s sustainable credentials and technical performance and it is on these criteria that many of our projects incorporate such roofs.

    Our sedum roof to EcoShed 01 in Hammersmith was selected as it sat well with the clients sustainable agenda and being on a tight urban site with many other buildings looking down on it the roof was an important elevation.

    Similarly for the same Client our EcoShed 02 incorporated a rubble roof.  Here the brief was similar and being built in a public park in Hammersmith the roof was once again a key feature of the project. In this instance a rubble roof was selected as it would add diversity to our Clients portfolio of sustainable buildings, which are used as teaching tools in their activities in the community. The project also pursued a zero carbon agenda and in order not to take material off site the excavated rubble become the rubble roof. Over time this roof will become ‘greener’ as plant seeds are blown onto it.  A feature of this roof is the incorporation of a roof light through the rubble which provides an engaging composition.  On a number of other projects we have incorporated various roof lights and also solar photovoltaic arrays. The latter provides an interesting contrast between the exact blue solar panel and the sedum roof around it.

    Also in site near St Albans our low energy refurbishment of a country house incorporates sedum roofs.  This is part of an overall sustainable strategy that also utilises a Ground Source Heat Pump, Solar Photovoltaic panels and Solar Thermal Panels.  In addition a great effort is made to reduce heat loss through the building fabric.

    At our school in Eynsford a sedum roof provides the continuous spine of the building. The project providing several new classrooms and associated support and staff rooms takes its inspiration from a Dragonfly built as it is next to the river Darent. The wings of the dragonfly sit over the classrooms and the linear body is then enclosed with a sedum roof.

    Sedum Roof Brighton

    If our private residential projects do not share the same visual metaphor as for school projects the green roofs nonetheless provide an extremely pleasing and sustainable aesthetic.  At our project in Hastings which involved a number of extensions and internal refurbishment of a large property overlooking Hastings old town, the side return extension is completed with a Sedum roof.

    Our proposal for a green office in Bray in Berkshire also features a simple striking roof form much as at the Eynsford school and this too being in a green setting is designed as a sedum roof.  The walls are largely formed from recycled shipping containers and the roof floats over these being divided from each other by a continuous strip of glass.

    As you can see there many opportunities to incorporate a Green Roof in your project .  Our next article will describe the full range of advantages that such a roof can offer a project.

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