The Highland Gardens Housing Project mid-rise, which replaces two forbidding, soon-to-be-demolished towers, has 114 affordable, accessible apartments for the elderly and people with disabilities. This beautifully designed building contains many ?green? features that will add value to both the building and the environment. One ?green? building feature is the 20,032 ft2 green roof that was installed to assist this development with on-site stormwater management. The project has aided the City of Milwaukee in its development of a Milwaukee Initiative for Sustainable Development to deal with stormwater management. Implementation of the initiative directs developers seeking city subsidies, including tax-increment financing, to find ways to control stormwater runoff through such means as green roofs, rain gardens, and permeable paving. Stormwater control devices such as green roofs retain and detain rainwater that would otherwise make its way to the street and into the city?s already overloaded combined storm and sanitary sewers. When the combined sewers exceed the capacity of the treatment works, the partially treated sewage is discharged into Lake Michigan.
At 20,032 ft2, the roof is believed to be the largest vegetated roof on any residential development in the nation (October 2004). The GreenGrid? Green Roof System was installed on the two high-rise portions of this property. The system included 2,184 of the 2? x 4? x 4? GreenGrid? Extensive modules, 132 of the 2? x 2? x 4? GreenGrid? Extensive modules, 338 Pavers, and 170 Ecoballast modules. The 20,032 ft2 GreenGrid? Green Roof was completed in eight days. The GreenGrid? Extensive Modules were planted with a Sedum mix containing Sedum acre, Sedum album, Sedum floriferum ?Bailey?s Gold,? Sedum kamtschaticum, Sedum rupestre ?Foresteranum,? and Sedum spurium ?Dragon?s Blood.?