Analysis of Potential Roofs

Potential Rooftop Space in the Central Business District

In the event that co-researchers are not available for a significant portion of the 7 week period, group efforts will be focused on marketing and developing optimal characteristics for a prospective rooftop. Vegetation needs three major components to survive: light, water, and nutrients. The main concern when picking a location for a green rooftop is the amount of sun the rooftop will receive. Through the use of Geographic Information System (GIS) and building plans of the city, the team will be able to determine which buildings are suitable.

GIS is a system that is designed to store and manipulate geographic data. This system will provide the team with the elevations of the landscape of downtown Cape Town. The GIS data will be used in conjunction with building plans to determine the absolute height of buildings relative to neighbouring buildings. If the buildings are not tall enough, surrounding buildings will cause the plants to be in shadow (Esri, 2012).

In addition to meeting the biological needs of the plants the building must be able to support the additional weight of the green rooftop when saturated with water. This structural information can also be found in the building plans at the city hall. Another major aspect of the roof that must be accounted for is pitch. The roof should have an angle close to zero degrees due to erosion of the surface. With time, dirt will slide down a pitched roof (Esri, 2012).

To ensure the major requirements of a rooftop are met, a chart was developed:

GIS Checklist

Table 5: GIS Checklist

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