With our out-door space in cities always at a premium, some people have been thinking about what’s above their heads, roof spaces…… for conservatories, terraces and gardens.
This is an area where we can enjoy the natural light, get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and relax in our own private space, even in our greatest metropolises.
For those of you who may have travelled around the world and seen some spectacular roof terraces that have offered you a taste of outdoor living with spectacular views. Have you considering this as an option?
Image from Boundary Rooftop Restaurant London
Your first step would be to apply to your local Council for planning permission, follow strict structural and building regulations and conditions of build for your property. These processes would need to be carried out to ensure that you property is strong enough structurally to be able to stand the additional weight to the roof of the building.
Have a look around your neighbourhood to see if a precedent has been set, ask whether any neighbours have this addition to their roof tops or if someone has tried for planning permission but it has been turned down within the locality of your property.
In a number of cases your home may not be suitable for this addition. If it is, you may still need additional steel work/roof joists to reinforce the roof, this may be a huge cost to the project without the benefit that you feel it may give your life style.
Always consider how you will access the roof area, remember anything that you want on the roof i.e. conservatory frame work, glass, flooring, furniture, plants, decking etc., is generally going to have to come through the house to get onto the roof. Make sure doorways are wide enough, staircases strong enough, there is separation from the rest of the house with good insulation against cold weather and for energy efficiency and lastly the view from the top you can live with and enjoy.
The style of the conservatory, may be controlled by the local authority, so don’t initially set your heart on one particular style, have a number of options that you would be happy to have on your roof if your first choice is declined.
While the work is being carried out always remember that your neighbours are all around you, they may have concerns at what you are doing and what impact it may have on them, but with reassurance about your project and what you are trying to achieve we hope that all will be well. It will take a lot of planning and logistics to ensure that you achieve the desired result.
Image from Diarmuid Gavin’s Westland Magical Garden at the Chelsea Flower show 2012
As many of us will have seen watching this years Chelsea Flower show, a number of the display gardens have been conscious about the lack of space in our cities for relaxation and growing plants and vegetables. With this amazing design, the pyramid shaped structure covering seven floors has shown what can be achieved with thought and planning. This structure included on different floors a garden, flower and vegetable plants, trees, a garden shed, a greenhouse, swings, an entertainment area all accessed by a lift and staircase with a stainless tubular slide from the 5th to the ground floor to add fun to your quick descent.
Obviously the Westland Magical Garden can not be built on our homes but it just shows you what can be achieved with a little thought.
The location of your new conservatory may not always be on the ground floor and not all companies will be able to offer you this service, so select a company that is able to translate your plans from a dream into reality.