The idea for some people of having a rooftop garden — an oasis in the sky — is a pleasant one. And we believe that if a person wants to build one on top of their private roof, they absolutely should.

And they should pay for it, care for it, and be responsible for watering it. This should not be a law.
The idea pushed by environmentalists is that these gardens, about 20 percent of a rooftop on a building larger than 25,000 square feet, will save us all from climate change.

So they reason that everyone should be required to have one and pay for it, and environmentalists want voters to make the gardens mandatory.

But when so many cities are battling problems of homelessness, including our own, it seems superfluous to demand that all new builders creates gardens that will certainly hike the purchase or rent price.

And that’s exactly what Initiated Ordinance 300 on the ballot next month will do — raise our rents.

Dozens of groups have lined up against the “green roof initiative” and it’s not because they want to destroy the environment. If the market actually supported such an effort, if folks were willing to pay thousands and thousands of dollars for rooftop cacti, we would already have an explosion of rooftop gardens.

It’s a great idea for luxury buildings, for the upper class who can afford to plant their dollars in dirt. But for the rest of us regular folks scrapping to get by and pay rent or mortgages, we can’t afford this mandate.