An exploration of the benefits, drivers and barriers that affect the adoption of green roofs in urban Britain

Pryce, M 2006, An exploration of the benefits, drivers and barriers that affect the adoption of green roofs in urban Britain , PhD thesis, Salford : University of Salford.

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In urban areas surfaces are sealed by stone, concrete, and tarmac and there is a limited network of green areas. Consequently urban areas have higher temperatures, lower atmospheric humidity, and higher air pollution. By adopting green roofs in sufficient numbers in cities the quality of the urban environment could be significantly improved by cooling and improving the moisture content of the air, by extracting CO2 and pollutants and by attenuating rain water run-off. In Germany and Switzerland there is a well established and successful green roof industry that has developed steadily over many years. In contrast there are few green roofs in the UK. Yet the potential is huge, an estimated 20,000 hectares of existing urban roofs in the UK could be vegetated with little or no structural modification (Corus: 2001). Furthermore, roof gardens and terraces could offer an increasingly valued green space in cities where populations are growing and where it is becoming difficult to afford land on the ground. This qualitative study aims to discover why recent existing urban green roofs were adopted and how this uptake was affected by the perceived benefits and barriers set out in the report. The study tests a possible research design, which could be used to explore the main research themes and questions. To explore these themes and potential designs the research uses the exploratory case study method. Three very different buildings with green roofs were used these are all situated in British cities and were all built between 1999 and 2004. The buildings include Greenside Place in Edinburgh, BedZED in London and the National Wildflower Centre in Liverpool. The drivers for the adoption of each green roof match the theoretical drivers and benefits, as do the barriers. Where the green roofs have been adopted, no known, significant barriers exist. Although the roofs are not entirely problem free, for example, some plants on the roofs have suffered in the exposed conditions, on the whole, the studied roofs are well received and considered successful by stakeholder members.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Contributors: Hudson, J (Supervisor)
Schools: Schools > School of the Built Environment > Centre for Urban Processes, Resilient Infrastructures & Sustainable Environments
Depositing User: Institutional Repository
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2012 13:34
Last Modified: 04 Aug 2022 11:21

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