Mono-pitched roof

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Modern mono-pitched roofs in northern Australia
Mono-pitched addition to a house with a dual-pitched roof

A mono-pitched roof is a single-sloping roof surface, often not attached to another roof surface. Mono-pitched roofs are also known as a pent roof, shed roof, lean-to roof,[1] or skillion roof (in Australia). This is in contrast to a dual-pitched roof, also known as a gabled roof, which is pitched in two different directions.

A mono-pitched roof can also be a smaller addition to an existing roof, where keeping to the same slope (roof pitch) puts the mono-pitched roof lower than the ceiling height of the main structure. In this case even though the main roof has a flat ceiling, the mono-pitched part will have a sloping, or raked, ceiling line to maximise the ceiling height. The name lean-to roof comes from this form of addition.[2]

Mono-pitched roofs can also be used to provide clerestory windows for a hallway or similar room where a row of windows is placed below the edge of the mono-pitched section reaching above the other roof below.

The advantage of a shed roofs in Odessa in 19 century[edit]

Courtyards No 26 and 28 on M. Raskova street, Moldavanka in Odessa in June, 1967. The courtyard 26 had one wall of the demolished house (in the center), seems it was demolished on beginning of 20 century, and the apricot tree behind the wall on the place of demolished house. Another house of courtyard No 26 (on the right), the house of Mikhail Chernyavsky family, was facing on the street. The courtyard 28 on the left. All houses including demolished house had mono-pitched roofs.
Mono-pitched roofs of living houses between Kartamyshevskaya street and Sryednyaya street in Moldavanka today, in 2017. This roofs are roofs of courtyard behind the demolished courtyard No 26 on Kartamyshevskaya street. In the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, these roofs were covered with tar paper or other materials.

Before 1890, the most houses in Moldavanka District were built with mono-pitched roofs (shed roofs) due to local natural conditions and circumstances required it. The closest big river Dniester ran far from Odessa, about 50 kilometers. Some small streams and springs inside Odessa city and Moldavanka were used by inhabitants and it was not enough during the hot and dry season in July and August. This circumstance limited the population of the city also and the city did not expand. It stayed inside of it's city limits until the 20th century. Until the 1890's, when the water supply system was constructed for the city, the population had to collect rain water in drums, underground cisterns or other vials during the rain season to use collected water during the dry season. It is why any mono-pitched roof of Odessa house have a slope, which directed inside the courtyard. Due to in Odessa region winter snow was rare, stayed not long time and quickly melted, the mono-pitched roofs were available in this region as the small quantity of snow has not destroy this type roof. This type of roof permitted the collection of rain water from one side of the house, and it was better than using a gable roof.

During the Second world war Odessa city was surrounded by German and Romanian troops in 1941, and it was the hottest and driest period in July and August. Due to water supply system from the river, which was far from Odessa, was opened in 1973 in the Odessa city center and the system reached Moldavanka District later in 1980-1990s, the old city water supply system, including underground tanks and one-stage houses with shed roofs, was destroyed. Three and more stegs[clarification needed] houses were built in Odessa from the end of 1890-s mostly and their roofs did not permit collection of enough rain water for the inhabitants. As result, thirst of water came in Odessa in August 1941, during the siege. The Soviet Marines were landed on German-occupied territory at water supply station between Odessa and river to give water for Odessa citizens during some hours only. Odessa citizens were informed in appropriate time to stand by at water supply valves, as the Soviet military chiefs were confident of a positive result of the military operation to supply the city with water for a few hours only. Water supply was arranged by Soviet Mariners and the most of them was killed during the battle at the water supply station.

Soviet movie Thirst of water was filmed in 1959 in honor of above described military operation.

Today a mono-pitched roof of a living house is rare in Odessa.


  1. ^ Cowan, Henry J., and Peter R. Smith. Dictionary of architectural and building technology. 4th ed. London: Spon Press, 2004. Print. ISBN 0415312345
  2. ^ "Spray Foam Insulation For Flat Roofs". 2017-03-29. Retrieved 2017-04-11.