Thursday, April 1, 2010

Rooftop Habitats - Dusty Gedge

Urban ecologist Dusty Gedge came to Portland recently for a series of lectures discussing biodiversity for ecoroofs - a topic in need of exploration in our region. His inspiring work in London is an example of the impact that policy and design changes on habitat in urban areas.

:: image via Dusty Gedge

Via KGW: "Wednesday, Dusty Gedge, president of the European Federation of Green-roof Associations, took a tour of some of Portland’s green roof-tops. Gedge says Portland is internationally known for its traditional eco-roofs which help reduce annual storm runoff by about 70 percent. But he says, with a few modifications, the green roofs also provide a home to wildlife like insects and birds."

:: image via Green Roof Consultancy

The modifications he mentioned include developing from a flat monoculture of succulants to increase diversity of substrate, integrate topography, and provide more species diversity. I'd posit that many area rooftops already offer great habitat for insects and birds, and also improve the overall habitat for fish species by providing better water quality. That isn't to say that we shouldn't continue to expand the role of ecoroofs in habitat, as it is vital to moving forward with our knowledge of the potential for these installations in urban areas.

:: image via Green Roof Consultancy

This will require research on how to adapt these for a range of local species of concern, and how to maintain the level of performance with stormwater management and other benefits simultaneously. The other big issue will be education on the benefits balanced with the aesthetic implications of these roofs - as many factors are intertwined in the drivers for implementation of ecoroofs.

Check out some of the coverage from KGW for a tour of area rooftop projects.

1 comment:

  1. Societies and cities have evolved in such a way that big buildings started to appear more with the pass of time. Adding gardens in rooftops is an evolution to this big constructions. They help the environment and at the same time make spaces nicer.


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