Duke Cancer Center
LEED Certification
Certified LEED Gold

Sustainable Features
A special feature of the Cancer Center is the 8,100 sf green roof space complete with a 4,400 sf roof garden. Part of the roof space is developed with the use of a “Xero Flor” system for the fifth floor and an “Intensive Roof Garden Assembly” for the fourth floor — to reduce the heat island effect. The Xero Flor mats are pre-cultivated with mixtures of proven green roof plant species selected for climate compatibility within the geographic range of each production field. These succulents provide a uniform cover which is resistant to weeds and assists in reducing the amount of the unused stormwater collected from roof leaders. This reclaimed water is stored in three cisterns in the penthouse area and is then pumped and controlled by two separate irrigation controllers.

The roof gardens on the fourth floor are cast-in-place concrete planters with a few precast planters on the perimeter. The specified plant species flourish in this geographic zone and require minimal maintenance. The area offers many options for seating to enrich the patient’s experience during treatment. The wood trellis and benches are constructed of Ipe (aka Pau lope, Ironwood and Brazilian Walnut), known for its inherent strength and natural resistance to decay while providing an aesthetically pleasing natural appearance.

The gardens overlook the open space landscaping with its plethora of plantings, artwork, “Duke Stone” site walls, and hardscapes. The reclaimed water system mentioned above is innovative in that it is separated into two systems: stormwater roof collection and reclaimed condensate water from the air handling units. All of the roof leaders carry water to either the three penthouse cisterns for the rooftop irrigation system or are diverted to the underground 100,000 gallon cistern located in the open space landscaping which provides water for the thousands of plantings and turf areas located just outside the front doors of the Cancer Center. The capacity of the cistern is expected to provide irrigation during times of drought for up to a month. This tie between clinical space and a “park-like” atmosphere is the culmination of vision and investment from Duke Medicine’s leadership and consultants.


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