TTF tours PECO Green Roof

Julie Slavet
Sep 2, 2012

Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Watershed Partnership (TTF) Tree Campaign Organizer/VISTA Abby Grosslein and outgoing Community Liaison/VISTA Steph Clymer recently visited PECO’s green roof in Philadelphia.

This green roof is one of our region’s leading stormwater management features! Planted in 2008, the PECO green roof is open for tours and visible to many neighboring office buildings, making it an important educational and aesthetic feature.

Green RoofA view from the PECO green roof looking towards the Art Museum.

What is a green roof?

No, it is not a roof that has been painted green…it is a roof with plants growing on it! This vegetated roof has many benefits. TTF cares about green roofs because they help reduce stormwater runoff and pollution in our creeks and rivers by reducing peak flow during storms.

The PECO green roof is able to hold back 80% of the rain water that falls on it. This water is then absorbed by the plants, slowly released after the storm has passed, or evaporates directly into the air. Additionally, green roofs extend the life of a conventional roof, reduce heating and cooling costs, filter air pollutants, provide habitat for important pollinators, and to top it off… these roofs are beautiful!

This roof was planted with two different types of vegetation. The intensive vegetated roof area is deeper and has native perennial and grass species. The extensive vegetated roof area is much shallower and covers most of the roof. This area is planted with sedums, which are low maintenance versatile plants. They can tolerate extreme temperatures, high winds, and fluctuating rainfall… important for growing on a roof.

Sedum

Sedum plants growing on the PECO green roof.

Can I plant a green roof?

Green roofs are heavy and therefore it is not recommended that you install one on your own roof unless you work with a professional and undertake a feasibility study. To learn more about green roofs and if one may be right for you, check out this site from the Philadelphia Water Department.

Tours of the PECO green roof are led by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS). To attend one of the tours, visit this site.

TTF is proud that both PECO and PHS are represented on our Board of Directors and are strong partners!

How can I learn more?

Be sure to visit our website and subscribe to our monthly newsletter for up-to-date information on watershed and stormwater resources and happenings in our area.

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