Buildings Going Green, On Top At Least

This piece from <em>National Geographic</em> looks at how green roofs are sweeping across the tops of buildings all over the world.
April 21, 2009, 6am PDT | Nate Berg
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"The urban roofscape is a little like hell-a lifeless place of bituminous surfaces, violent temperature contrasts, bitter winds, and an antipathy to water."

"Living roofs aren't new. They were common among sod houses on the American prairie, and roofs of turf can still be found on log houses and sheds in northern Europe. But in recent decades, architects, builders, and city planners all across the planet have begun turning to green roofs not for their beauty-almost an afterthought-but for their practicality, their ability to mitigate the environmental extremes common on conventional roofs."

"To stand on a green roof in Vancouver-or Chicago or Stuttgart or Singapore or Tokyo-is to glimpse how different the roof­scapes of our cities might look and to wonder, Why haven't we always built this way?"

"...There is beginning to be a critical mass of green roofs around the world, each one an experiment in itself."

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Published on Monday, April 20, 2009 in National Geographic
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