How Green Roof Consulting Benefited Orland Park

Posted by Ecogardens

How Green Roof Consulting Benefited Orland Park | Consulting turned a recent green roofing project into a truly amazing collaborative effort.


In partnership with the Village of Orland Park, the Ecogardens team developed a novel model of green roof construction. Not to brag, but this consultation-based approach to green roof design and installation is something we need more of.

Download our FREE infographic explaining the benefits of green roof consulting.

Here at Ecogardens, we like to be groundbreaking.

Not just in the literal sense (although we do enjoy the prospects of a fresh project), but also in the figurative sense: If we can put a novel spin on an old model and make it work better, why wouldn’t we?

That’s why when the Village of Orland Park reached out to us to build them a green roof, we came back with a truly collaborative idea: Why not work together?

Our thinking was simple: If we could save the village money, impart ecologically conscious ideas to village workers, and create an amazing municipal amenity space all at the same time ... obviously we’re going to, right?

... Right? RIGHT.

So that’s exactly what we did. From the first foray into design through to the last native planting – and the ongoing tweaking that is a part of any stewardship contract – we have put our very best ideas into this project.

It stands to reason, therefore, that we had to tell you all about it. If you are considering a green roof, but want to cut costs and learn lots, we’ve included all our secrets below.

Read on, or download our beautiful infographic to share with family, friends, colleagues, peers and fellow restaurant-goers. (Okay, maybe not that last one. It’s lunchtime; sue us.)

Orland Park Infographic | Our work with Orland Park resulted in a novel model and an incredible green roof.

The Incredible Benefits of Green Roof Consulting


Among the highlights of this functional design are:

  • 1,600 feet of green roof to manage stormwater and nurture wildlife
  • 300 feet of highly functional amenity space for events or classes
  • Planting media as low as 2 inches on outer edge, making for a light roof
  • Growing media 8 inches deep at its deepest point, again for a very light system
  • Almost 100% native plants drawn from the immediate geographic area
  • Porcelain pavers on adjustable pedestals for easy long-term maintenance


To get these benefits, we worked collaboratively with Orland Park. In the process, we:

  • Partnered with the village government to create a novel public-private game plan
  • Supplied the design and materials to the village stakeholders
  • Worked with village workers to install the green roof from start to finish
  • In the process, taught many village workers green roofing skills to use in future
  • Created hundreds of square feet of new green roof and amenity space that didn’t exist before
  • Used almost entirely local plantings that will help draw in local wildlife
  • Employed a range of cutting-edge technologies to manage stormwater
  • Installed specialized monitoring equipment to track multiple climate metrics


This working rooftop employs technology to monitor:

  • Weather patterns
  • Ambient temperatures
  • Rainfall
  • Evapotranspiration
  • Cooling effects of the green roof
  • ... compared to the bare roof next to it
  • Water retention

It also has video, so we’ve caught all sorts of wildlife on candid camera! We see you, you adorable birds, you.


Other cutting-edge technologies used include:

  • Prototype high-efficiency water retention layer
  • Thin, light growing media capable of supporting plants in 2 inches or more
  • Porcelain pavers on adjustable pedestals
  • Monitoring and weather station equipment


Speaking of that prototype high-efficiency water retention layer:

  • Holds 90 percent of its volume in water
  • Makes for massive stormwater benefits
  • Gives water to plants during dryer periods
  • Enables plant growth in very little media
  • Expands the environments suitable for green roofs

So much was possible because the Village of Orland Park worked with a knowledgeable green roofing company, leveraging the benefits of consulting while still playing an active role in the process.


Throughout the partnership we:

  • Taught municipal personnel how to create green roofs
  • Saved the village money – between 20 and 30 percent the cost of outsourcing entirely
  • ... and that’s including the learning curve and union wages
  • Worked in close partnership to realize Orland Park’s vision
  • Will continue to consult in future on the health of the green roof


Just how do you keep a roof as healthy as possible? Here’s a great start:

  • Work with a professional green roofer familiar with the area
  • Use native plants wherever possible to see if they work
  • Sub in sedums and other green roof workhorses where necessary
  • Track plant health year to year to ensure nobody is bullying or being bullied
  • Schedule site visits 3-6 times a year
  • Address the health of the entire plant community as needed


Think you might want to bring your own team in on this? It could be the best idea ever! You should consider consulting for your green roof project if you:

  • Want to teach your team valuable green roofing skills
  • Would like to cut 20-30 percent on project costs
  • Need to save an ailing green roof and don’t know how
  • Want to use the best materials possible start to finish


Sound like you? Then it’s time you got in touch with us here at Ecogardens today!



Topics: Green Roofs

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