One of the most popular uses for synthetic turf in recent years is for surfacing rooftop decks and patios. We see this frequently in both residential and commercial applications, and it’s a great way to brighten up a space and super soft on the feet! We have also had many requests for rooftop putting greens and dog-friendly spaces. Regardless of your application, here are a couple considerations for your rooftop outdoor space:
- Existing Drainage: before laying down turf, make sure to assess how that area is currently drainage after a period of heavy rain. Especially here in Vancouver and the lower mainland you don’t want to risk flooding your patio! In many cases where there is already a drainage system in place, you can simply lay the turf directly on top of the sub surface. But if you really want to improve the drainage and have the turf dry out faster, you will need a separate drainage layer (see below)
- Additional Drainage Underlay: there are 2 main types of drainage systems we will use for rooftop applications; AirDrain or TurfCloud. Airdrain is a 1” tall, hard-plastic grid system made from recycled materials. It is the most effective system on the market and works for drainage pet urine as well. TurfCloud Flow is a comparable product made of foam with a built-in drainage channel. The advantage with TurfCloud is that is makes the turf much softer, however it does hold a bit of the water like a sponge.
- Logistics of the Installation: what most people don’t realize is that we have to transport a 15’ long roll of turf that often weighs north of 200 lbs up to your roof deck, along with hundreds of pounds of infill, drain tiles, tools and more! In many cases we will have to cut the turf into smaller sections so it can fit up the elevator which adds a bit more labour seaming them all up. In a perfect world, we would use a crane truck to hoist materials directly to the work area, however this can raise the costs significantly. Just be prepared, it’s not as simple as rolling out a piece of carpet on your roof deck and have a professional assess the logistics of executing the project
- Putting Greens: there are few things better than having a private putting green on your roofdeck, however these also present some unique logistical challenges. Primarily, how will we sink the cups underground? There are multiple ways to do it, however it often involves raising up the entire area and installing shallow 2” cups. If you don’t require cups, we can still cut out holes and it will make things easier and less expensive, however the speed of your putts needs to be perfect for the ball to stay in!
If you need any further assistance with your rooftop turf area or putting green, please contact us here and we’re happy to help!