Where’s your favorite rooftop garden?

City of Atlanta rooftop garden

More than 25 years ago, I visited my sister in New York City. At the time, she worked as a carpenter on custom projects for her clients. For one client, she built a rooftop garden, creating the structures needed so that the client’s rooftop could contain a garden.

My sister showed me the completed rooftop garden structure. I marveled at the craftsmanship and knowledge required to create the quiet, pleasant rooftop sanctuary. The space felt private and serene, particularly in comparison to the busy streets below.

In the past few years, I’ve observed rooftop gardens, green roofs, and rooftop decks in Atlanta. The city has become sufficiently busy and crowded so that individuals, families and businesses are looking up to create a quiet space.

In addition to providing a quiet space for employees, residents and customers, a green roof offers other benefits. The Environmental Protection Agency describes these sustainability benefits well in a one page description of heat island mitigation. The pros include:

  • Reduced energy use within the building
  • Reduced air pollution and green house gas emissions and
  • Improved storm water management and water quality

Understanding the technical details about how a layer of rooftop vegetation can provide heat island mitigation is great knowledge to have. However, for many residents in today’s crowded cities, it’s enough to know that if the city’s gardens and green spaces are crowded, consider looking up to find the quiet sanctuary desired. Sky-high green spaces are beautiful and may be much less crowded. If you can’t find one in your city, consider working with a group to create one.

To find ideas for designs that might work in your space, take a look at rooftop gardens on Pinterest as well as green roof books available online.

Do you have any favorite, publicly accessible rooftop gardens in your city?

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