During the summer of 2008, with grant money from the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and the City of Portland, an eco-roof was installed atop the Central Library (801 SW 10th Ave).
Constructed with living plants and simulating the processes that occur in nature, eco-roofs absorb rain water like a meadow in a natural setting.
Last January, the library began offering scheduled public tours. I wanted to check the roof out for myself, but every tour I attempted to sign up for was booked solid for weeks into the future, and eventually I just forgot about it.
I stumbled upon the library’s Eco-Roof tour page again recently, however, and as luck would have it there were a couple spots available (there are only 12 spaces available for each tour) for last Saturday’s morning tour.
The tour begins at the Welcome Desk in the foyer. We were late by a couple minutes so the security guard graciously took us up to the fifth floor in a service elevator where the rest of the tour group was already assembled. As the guide answered questions and expounded on the benefits of the eco-roof (much of the spiel is on this webpage), we snapped a few photos and enjoyed the views (Saturday was a beautiful day!)
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