Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE)
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The Trial Greenroof at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE); Photo Kelly LuckettProject Name: Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE)
Year: 2005
Owner: Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
Location: Edwardsville, IL, USA
Building Type: Educational
Type: Extensive, Test/Research
System: Custom
Size: 1386 sq.ft.
Slope: 1.25%
Access: Accessible, Private
Submitted by: Kelly Luckett & Bill Retzlaff

Designers/Manufacturers of Record:
Research Team: Dr. Bill Retzlaff, SIUE Environmental Sciences Program
Research Team: Dr. Susan Morgan, SIUE Dept. of Civil Engineering
Research Team: Dr. Terry Yan, SIUE Dept. of Mechanical Engineering
Research Team: Vic Jost, Jost Greenhouses
Research Team: Kelly Luckett, St. Louis Metalworks
Industry Collaborator: Midwest Groundcovers
Industry Collaborator: Midwest Trading & Horticultural Supplies
Industry Collaborator: JDR Enterprises
Modular Greenroof Systems: Green Roof Blocks & GreenPaks
 Phase I: Photo Courtesy Dr. Bill Retlaff.Phase I on the ground: Green Roof ModelsPhase I: Kelly Luckett, Bill Retlaff and students in April 2005.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE), along with colleagues, students, and new industry collaborators established the first green roof research site at SIUE as the first in The Green Roof Environmental Evaluation Network (G.R.E.E.N). G.R.E.E.N is "A Collaborative Green Roof Research Project Specific to the Midwest." The Green Roof experiment is an effort between Green Roof Blocks?, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE), The University of Georgia, and The University of Missouri at Columbia. The research project is being directed by Coordinator Dr. William Retzlaff of the SIUE Environmental Sciences Program and collaborated with Kelly Luckett, president of Green Roof Blocks?. G.R.E.E.N. has been awarded an EPA grant to fund additional monitoring equipment.

Project Objectives:

1) Evaluate the environmental benefits of green roof implementation.

2) Evaluate how green roof installation benefits the building owner.

3) Evaluate the performance of various green roof materials and techniques.

4) Gather input from and disseminate information to interested parties.

The photo above shows 144 Green Roof Blocks at 576 sf and 180 GreenPaksat 810 sf, with a total greenroof area of 1386 sq ft (that?s just on the Engineering Building rooftop; there are 66 modules on tables at grade on the field site for an additional 264 sf.
The Coordinator of G.R.E.E.N. (The Green Roof Environmental Evaluation Network) located at SIUE, and some very hard-working student researchers.Phase II:  We are looking at four media formulation; expanded slate, expanded clay, red lava rock, and white pumice. We are also looking at three species of sedum: S. spurium, S. sexangulare, and S. 'Immergrauch.'  Photo by Kelly Luckett.
Plant growth, performance, roof coverage, storm water runoff quality, and thermal characteristics will be evaluated over the next few years. Research outcomes will be shared with those wishing to establish commercial green roof installations.

Green Roof Blocks? donated an additional 108 units of its product on September 20, 2005 to the SIUE Engineering Building at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) as Phase II. The university is utilizing the green roof system for research purposes and is part of an eventual 1000 Green Roof Block? system. The installation follows an initial 16 Green Roof Block? installation on the SIUE Engineering Building on July 20, 2005. 16 (64 sf) control models have various media depths and roofing membranes, each without plants.

Additional thumbnail photos:

We are looking at three fertilizing options; Osmocote, IBDU, and no fertilizer at all. There are three replications of each combination for a total of 108 Blocks.The Blocks have been randomized to eliminate any positional bias. The students are evaluating growth rate, saturation levels, leaching, and soil temperatures.  Photos by Kelly Luckett.September 20, 2005:  Student researcher volunteers.Phase II: The test blocks.  Photos Kelly Luckett.The SIUE Environmental Sciences Program Field Facility at grade. They began work at the field location in April 2005 with the construction of four large tables and thirty-six individual green roof models.
Stay tuned with Dr. Bill Retzlaff's bi-annual guest column here on, entitled The G.R.E.E.N. Research Report. Also, research information will be posted at as it becomes available or email For more info about Green Roof Blocks, please visit their website and The Greenroof Directory.
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