MNN Galleries

8 lush green rooftops from around the globe

By: Katherine Butler on Aug. 17, 2011, 1 p.m.
Purple flowers and grass in a roof garden with the Chicago skyline

Photo: sookie [CC by 2.0]/Flickr

1 of 10

Look up

The hills are alive with lush greenery — but so are many rooftops. Green or living rooftops, long popular in Europe, are becoming common with both private and business owners alike. The green roof industry grew by as much as 28 percent in 2010. Why? Green rooftops, which are relatively thin layers of greenery affixed to a roof, can act as effective insulators, thus reducing energy costs. They also last longer and can absorb stormwater, acting as valuable drainage systems. Green rooftops can provide a pleasant escape for inhabitants of an urban jungle. This photo features the Mountain Equipment Coop, a popular outdoor equipment store in Toronto. Who knew a meadow could appear on a skyline? (Text: Katherine Butler)