Roel de Boer is a Dutch product designer with a fondness for playing with ideas about sustainability. He dreamed up these tree houses that look like alien nests and a wood stove that burns individual spruce trunks. Inhabitat dug up another one of his ideas: roofing tiles that will turn the steep sloped roofs of old buildings into fancy new green roofs.

Here’s what they’d look like in action, theoretically:


Roel de Boer

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On his website (via Google Translate), he says the idea is about “transforming a stone city to an overgrown city” and that the tiles are “stepping stones for wildlife in the city.” These flowerpot-like roof tiles are meant to perform many of the same services that flat green roofs do, like insulating buildings and minimizing stormwater runoff. Plus, they’re pretty.