Houzz Logo Print

Floating Roof Deck Buildout - Advice? Pitfalls? Other?

2 years ago
last modified: 2 years ago

Hi Everyone,

We are looking at expanding our roof deck outside of our condo. Right now, we have a very tiny patio. There is a metal bumper/guard with a railing screwed into it. We've confirmed with the building's original architect that the entire footprint of the roof is load bearing and could be turned into an ~750 sq ft roof deck. It's one of the reasons why my husband wanted to buy this particular condo.

We are on the 4th floor (if that matters). Because of building set back requirements, we can't build out the inside any more than the size of the full rectangle (right now, our interior is not a full rectangle because of an odd cut out with a skylight in it, see layout). We are, however, allowed to have a roof deck the full foot print of the roof.

Originally, we were waiting to do a big deck build out because it turns out the roof is slightly negatively sloped. So at some point, it needs to be fixed and that would most likely be a major overhaul and paid for by the HOA.

We also wanted to wait until the roof was ripped out/redone so that we could figure out how to put railings in at that time.

A description of the current roof/material is in one of the photos. It's a "heavy duty hot-asphalt built-up roof (BUR) with a tough mineral-surfacing."

Given the Shelter-in-place situation and the fact that we now have a toddler, my husband wants to find an interim solution.

Our architect is recommending freestanding railing with a floating deck system that can be pulled up for repairs/cleaning of the existing roof.

IPE Pedestal Deck Tiles like the ones shown here:

Combined with Elmich VersiJack supports:

Free Standing Roof Edge Railing System - doesn't penetrate current roofing membrane:

Things to consider: We are open to getting rid of the inner most skylight in the future. The outside skylight we would like to keep, so we would have to build protection around it. The hatch is required as a means of egress. We should probably also figure out a way to fence this off/protect it so it's not a tripping hazard.

We would like to remove the current existing bumper/railing (in red on my layout), patch the roof and have it all be one level. However, it would mean that when we open the door, we'd have to "step up" onto the floating system.

Does anyone have experience installing a free floating deck system? Any advice? Pitfalls?

Any advice/pitfalls/things to consider for when we do re-do the roof and install a proper roof deck and railing?

Would it be helpful to hire a landscape architect/designer in addition to our architect?

We have zero experience with this. Any and all advice is super welcome!!

Comments (10)