I walked over to the boundary wall of the roof, determined to see over the edge.
What word can I use instead of the phrase in bold?

EDIT: When roofs DO have boundary walls, usually a few feet high, what are they called?

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    Unclear. Most roofs have no "boundary wall" atop them.
    – Hot Licks
    Apr 16, 2016 at 17:19
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    I at first misunderstood the question, because to me "boundary wall" means "a wall that marks the legal boundary of a property" rather than a physical edge, so I thought it was going to be about walls in a loft space under a roof, dividing one property from the next.
    – Colin Fine
    Apr 16, 2016 at 18:12
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    @HotLicks - Required by code.
    – Mazura
    Apr 16, 2016 at 22:56
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    @Mazura - That's the code for Chicago, where the buildings are elbow to elbow and (since some minor incident some years back) there is a "fire code" which requires measures to prevent the spread of fire from one building to the next. The vast majority of the US (and, I'd hazard, the rest of the world) has houses set apart from each other (and often with pitched roofs, not flat).
    – Hot Licks
    Apr 16, 2016 at 23:42
  • Having tuckpointed my share of firewalls, I was surprised to find them being called parapets in my code.
    – Mazura
    Apr 16, 2016 at 23:55

3 Answers 3


A wall on the edge of a roof is referred to as a parapet.

This Wikipedia article contains many examples of parapets.

  • 1
    Sometimes referred to as a "parapet wall"
    – abligh
    Apr 16, 2016 at 20:26

If the wall protrudes from the roof in an area other than the perimeter of the structure it could be a "firewall" or "firebreak", such as the brick protrusions between units of a townhouse.


If there's a dedicated walkway in front of said 'wall' one could refer to it as a "widow's walk"

  • 1
    Wouldn't that be the walkway rather than the wall ?
    – Criggie
    Apr 17, 2016 at 6:36

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