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Millmont Elementary School

Reading, PA

Vegetative Roof Installation

November 2008

When the Reading School District set its sights on renovating the Millmont Campus, it left no stone unturned in the search for the right team to pull off its $40 million expansion. Aside from being a high-profile project, housing two separate schools – Millmont Elementary and the 6th grade Magnet School – the expansion was also creating the largest building in Berks County to utilize green roofing technology.

Gilbert Architects, working with Wohlsen Construction, both of Lancaster, incorporated a vegetative roof into the new construction to accomplish several goals. Adding the green roof not only replaced open space lost through the expansion, it also decreased the school’s carbon footprint by producing oxygen and helped with storm water retention. Because installing a green roof can be more complex than other roofing types, Wohlsen needed a roofing contractor it could trust to properly install and maintain the roof. Wohlsen turned to GSM Roofing.

When deciding to go green, there are a number of factors to consider. Do you want intensive, extensive or semi-intensive? Facility managers also need to understand the weight carrying capacity and growth medium that are best for your roof. For the Millmont project, GSM installed an Extensive American Hydrotech Garden Roof® Assembly to the two roof elevations totaling 12,000 sq. ft. The fluid-applied rubberized asphalt membrane was selected for its proven performance in keeping buildings watertight. Four types of sedum, with water-storing leaves, were selected as the vegetation. Nearly three years out, the project is still getting a “green” thumbs-up.

Project Highlights:

  • Bonding the American Hydrotech Monolithic watertight membrane to the metal roof deck
  • Installation of the drain mat insulation
  • Installation of filter fabric
  • Spreading of growing medium (dirt)
  • Planting of thousands of sedum plants
  • Maintaining vegetative garden for two years following installation

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A big thanks to the GSM team, the guys were a big help at our test roof installation yesterday.

Michael Stieh Sr Staff Engineer June 28, 2022