Green roofs are all the rage these days. Some merely pay lip service to the concept while others, like the green roof atop Batten Hall at Harvard University, are dreamscapes of beautiful design and functionality.
In a recent article on Harvard's sustainability blog, Colin Durrant, the school's sustainability communications director, described the unique features of the rooftop and shared stunning photos of the view on the roof.
Harvard's Greenest Roof
Standing among the flowers and plants on the roof of Batten Hall on a recent August day is reminiscent of standing in a country meadow on a late summer afternoon. Petals flutter slightly in the wind and bees buzz from flower to flower seeking nectar. Many of the bees come from two beehives recently installed on the opposite corner of the roof. Just a floor above us, 436 solar panels are converting the intense summer sun into electricity that will be used to provide power to the Harvard Innovation Lab and modular, learning spaces (AKA “Hives”) clustered inside.
Photos courtesy of Harvard's Office of Sustainability
Welcome to what may be Harvard’s greenest roof—there are other buildings with larger solar installations, other green roofs, and additional beehives on several dorms and academic buildings but we know of no other rooftop at the University that is home to all three.