Learn more about Roofscapes in The Greenroof Directory. For more information about this project, visit Roofscapes, Inc. here. Read the 12.12.07 Philadelphia citypaper.net article “Going Deep” by Jason Tomassini here, and the 6.15.07 The Evening Bulletin article “Center City Gets Its First Green Roof” by Jenny DeHuff here.
The Friends Center is a site of Quaker worship since 1856 that also contains offices for a number of nonprofits. In December 2007 it received funding inearly for more than $500,000 from the PA state’s Department of Environmental Protection. The money will enable it to become the first building in Pennsylvania to install underground geothermal wells for heating and cooling, as part of a wide-scale renovation at Friends Center that will reduce energy costs by 50 percent and limit carbon emissions, fossil-fuel use and water contamination. “The Friends Center already has some solar panels and recently added a vegetated roof to help with the heating and cooling. Further renovations will use an open design to maximize sunlight and include a built-in mechanism that dims lighting fixtures as more sunlight reaches the building. There will also be a new landscaping design and runoff system that will keep storm water on site, either letting it back into the ground or reusing it to flush toilets.” (Philadelphia citypaper.net, 12.12.07, see below.)
Construction of the Center City’s non-profit’s greenroof started in early June, 2007 and was expected to be completed within two weeks. “Our goal is not only to ‘green’ our building,” Patricia McBee, spokeswoman and director of the Friends Center capital campaign, said. “We want to change building practices in the city and the region. Our lives depend on discovering ways to reduce our toxic impact on the earth.” (The Evening Bulletin, 6.15.07, see below.)The Friends Center campus exemplifies the Friends (Quakers) commitment to environmental stewardship. In addition to solar panels, geothermal wells, and rainwater harvesting, this beautiful urban campus boasts one of the largest green roofs in Center City Philadelphia. The green roof is an un-irrigated, 3? thick Sedum-covered Type II Roofmeadow? Aromatic Garden installed 60 feet above the city streets. Stormwater modeling of the green roof during the design phase confirmed that its performance would satisfy the city stormwater regulations and the Friends sustainability objectives.