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Sustainable Revitalization: Green Roofing in Philadelphia

Green roof in philly
School & Deparment: 
  • Liberal Arts, College of
  • Geography & Urban Studies
Start Date: 
Lead Investigators: 
Yuan Huang
Faculty Advisors: 
Charles Kaylor
Funding Source: 
CARAS / Office of Sustainability

The goal of this project was to use certain selection criteria for spatial analytical operations using Geographical Information Systems, conduct field work to initially assess the structural stability of selected sites, and then create a database of existing green roofs and green roofing companies and firms in Philadelphia that will ultimately be uploaded onto a site for public access. The areas of need and feasibility that I have selected are located in New Kensington, West Philadelphia near Grey’s Ferry, South Philadelphia on Broad and Ellsworth to Broad and Passyunk Avenue, and Center City near the Walnut-Locust subway station as well as near the Schuykill Expressway. The majority of these sites were not only structurally stable but also include a high feasibility of actually implementing green roofs due to already observable informal greening of personal homes. The final selection criteria included block groups that were in the top 10 percentile of lacking trees, the top 10 percentile of containing impervious surfaces, above the median measurement of traffic congestion, the top 25 percentile of population density, and above the median vacancy level. In addition to selecting these sites, I also created a choropleth map using Median Household Income to distinguish the concentration of funds aggregated by block group.

Yuan Huang was named a 2012 Udall Scholar