GRCC’s new green roof reflects continued commitment to sustainability

Picture of ATC roof.

Grand Rapids Community College’s commitment to sustainability is reflected in its newest construction project through a 10,000-square-foot green roof on the Wisner-Bottrall Applied Technology Center expansion.

The recently completed green roof sits atop the two-story, 18,416-square-foot expansion of the ATC, which was part of the project that included extensive renovations in other parts of the building.

“Infrastructure and sustainability are strategic goals for our campus, and we always are looking for opportunities to be better stewards of our environment,” said Jim VanDokkumburg, GRCC’s executive director of facilities.

“Green roofs help with sustainability in many ways, including stormwater management, extending roof life cycle, improving acoustics and thermal insulation, creating habitat, and decreasing urban heat island effect.”

Sedum was planted on the roof. It is a hearty species that does well in all West Michigan’s weather conditions, and can thrive in relatively shallow soil, such as on green roofs. 

The new roof is near the ATC’s existing 35,000-square green roof, which was added in 2008 with support from the Steelcase Foundation. That roof is accessible from the ATC’s second floor study area, with an outdoor deck for students to get a closer view.

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