The roof of an upmarket Mount Maunganui apartment serves as a wonderful viewing platform overlooking the Pacific Ocean from six floors up. But by early 2009, the apartment's tired butyl rubber membrane roof was beginning to oxidize - a condition more commonly known as "chalking-off".
Not only was this old butyl struggling with the intense UV, the membrane (being black) had a propensity to become extremely hot; putting undue pressure on the air conditioning requirements (and therefore energy costs) of the building.
Additionally, the messy, black butyl powder from this chalking-off was beginning to rub-off onto the apartment owners (and their guests) feet when they went onto the roof to enjoy the view.
The owners, The Body Corporate, had installed some artificial grass on top of the butyl to alleviate these issues. Despite marginal success, this was acknowledged as a bit of an "apologetic" strategy - certainly not in-keeping with the quality and location of the building.