As part of the Northpark Town Center, Northpark 500 towers above the intersection of GA-400 and Peachtree-Dunwoody Road. An acre garden sits atop the 18-story high-rise located in the Atlanta’s Central Perimeter office district. With our experience in green roofs, SKB was chosen to landscape the renovation of the rooftop garden. Since weight is an issue on raised gardens, a light-weight planting mix was used to reduce stress on the structure. Once the soil was mixed off-site, we had to place the soil mix by crane.Thousands of tons of this planting mix had to be lifted to the rooftop. These soil-less mixes are designed to reduce the water holding capacity; more water equals more weight. Irrigation lines were installed along the roof of the parking deck to supply water to each area of the garden. In addition to the soil-less mix, the trees, each weighing several tons, also had to be lifted by crane. We used service elevators to get the remaining groundcovers and shrubs to the roof. Wind proved to be another factor in managing the landscape. We applied anti-desiccants to the trees to decrease evapo-transpiration, thereby reducing irrigation needs.
Once the landscape installation was completed, weekly maintenance was challenging. All maintenance equipment, flats of flowers, bags of mulch had to be hauled up the service elevators. With irrigation a must, its management proved to be very difficult. We had to reach the correct balance of irrigation to keep the plant material alive while not adding unnecessary weight to the structure. After overcoming numerous obstacles, we are very proud to have been a part of this project!