Re-thinking flat roofs

Charity Fields in Trust has compiled a ‘Green Space Index’ which has calculated 2.6million people in the UK live more than 10 minutes’ walk from a local park. What’s more, the average amount of green space per person is less than half a six-yard box on a football pitch.

With a growing body of evidence showing that living close to green spaces boosts people’s physical and mental wellbeing and more than half the world’s population now living in cities, could adding a roof garden to your property provide more than just financial benefits?

As with any roofing project, it is vital that the works are properly prepared beforehand. This means enlisting the help of a surveyor to accurately assess the weight the roof can hold – remember that green roofs won’t just be supporting plants; they will also need to support the weight of furniture and people.

Access to the roof also needs to be considered. Unlike other types of flat roof, a green roof will need to be maintained on a more regular basis, for example frequent watering of plants as rooftop gardens tend to catch more sun than ground-level gardens. The roof must therefore be safe and easy to access for the client.

As well as being more exposed to sun, rooftop gardens are also more exposed to wind. Consideration must also be given to screening the edges of the roof to shield against wind and how plants, furniture, and accessories such as lights will be secured – remember this will affect the overall weight of the roof.

What if you don’t have the space for a roof garden on your property?

The good news is you can still take action to improve the space around you. That’s because IKO PLC has developed IKO Carrara, an ecological roofing membrane made from recycled materials that acts as an “air purifier”, converting harmful gases in the atmosphere into harmless substances.

Adding IKO Carrara to your roof is a small action that can make a big difference to your environment. So, whether you’re feeling inspired to create a stunning urban roof garden or play your part in cleaning up your city’s air, get in touch with IKO today.

Our friendly team will be able to help with everything from writing the specification, to installation guidance and after-care tips to ensure you get the most out of your project.

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