Columbia St. Mary's has been awarded a $325,000 grant from the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District's (MMSD) 2010 Regional Green Roof Initiative Program to install a second green roof at the new Columbia St. Mary's Hospital Milwaukee. The hospital design currently includes a 6,000 sq. foot green roof area above the hospital's atrium on the corner of Lake Drive and North Avenue. The second 12,400 sq. foot green roof will be located above the middle building section along North Avenue.
"The green roof, also known as a 'live roof system' will positively impact the environment and patient experience" said Paul Westrick, Vice President of Mission Integration & Advocacy for Columbia St. Mary's. "This additional grant money will allow us triple our green roof space and have a greater visual and educational impact on the nearly 3,000 employees and 1,000 patients and visitors that will utilize our hospital every day. It will be one more key element in our efforts to provide a calm healing environment for our patients and their families," he said.
The purpose the green roof initiative for the MMSD is to capture rainwater on rooftops to keep that water out of the regional sewer system. According to the MMSD, green roofs also provide other environmental benefits including to significantly lower energy costs, reduce urban 'heat island' effect, and extend roof life.
The first green roof was planted this spring and construction and planting of the additional green roof space will occur prior to the new hospital opening in October. The roofs will contain a variety of green plants that are expected to be in full bloom when the new hospital opens.
Hospital officials worked in conjunction with our architects and building contractors to design and build structural reinforcements on the roof deck in order to support the additional weight of the green roof system. According to Westrick, once the project is completed there will be more than 18,000 square feet, almost half-an-acre of green space to absorb rain and protect the roof. A maintenance plan will be developed to ensure the green roof systems remain healthy and functioning.