Public Outdoor Space

VanDusen Botanical Garden


The VanDusen Botanical Garden in Vancouver was founded in 1975 and quickly became a staple attraction. In 2007, the garden was in need of a facelift to attract a new generation of nature lovers and families. The architects envisioned a breathtaking and sustainable visitor centre with a one-of-a-kind green roof.


This intensive, sloped green roof was designed by Perkins + Will and Cornelia Hahn Oberlander, in consultation with ZinCo Canada.

It boasts a massive 1,800 m² (19,300 suqare feet) organic-shaped green roof that immitates the leaves of an orchid flower with a stem represented by the central atrium.

Green Roof Assembly

Due to the unique slopes and curvatures of the roof, three different assemblies were used: Floradrain® FD 40-E on the flat areas, Floraset® FS 75 on the pitched roof areas and on the steep roof areas a build-up using Georaster®.

Key Challenges

Collaboration between an architectural firm, a landscape design company and a client working under strict timelines and budgets was a challenge that allowed us to improve our processes. The unique shape of the roof presented an exciting opportunity for ZinCo to combine three different systems.


  • Living Building Challenge Petal Certification
  • 2013 IGRA Green Roof Leadership Award
  • Most Sustainable Building of the Year for 2014
  • LEED platinum certified
  • 2017 Award of Excellence Green Roof for Healthy Cities