Vegetation as a climatic component in the design of an urban street. An empirical model for predicting the cooling effect of urban green areas with trees.

The cooling effect of small urban green wooded sites of various geometric configurations in summer is the object of this study. It was studied experimentally at 11 different wooded sites in the Tel-Aviv urban complex during the period July–August 1996. An empirical model is developed in this study for predicting the cooling effect inside the wooded sites. The model is based on the statistical analysis carried out on 714 experimental observations gathered each hour from the 11 sites on calm days, when urban climate is expressed. Two factors were found to explain over 70% of the air temperature variance inside the studied green site, namely, the partial shaded area under the tree canopy and the air temperature of the non-wooded surroundings adjoining the site. The specific cooling effect of the site due to its geometry and tree characteristics, besides the shading, was found to be relatively small, about 0.5 K, out of an average cooling of about 3 K at noon. The cooling effect of the green wooded areas on their immediate surroundings at noon was also analyzed. The findings corroborate earlier studies that the range is noticeable. At small green sites, the cooling effect estimated in this study is perceivable up to about 100 m in the streets branching out from the site. The empirical findings in this study permit development of tools for incorporating the climatic effects of green areas in the urban design. Some policy measures are proposed accordingly, for alleviating the ‘‘heat island’’ effect in the urban environment.

Suggested citation or credit:

Bar, L. Shashua. “Vegetation as a climatic component in the design of an urban street. An empirical model for predicting the cooling effect of urban green areas with trees. .” Energy and Buildings . 31. : 221.235, 2000.

Source: Energy and Buildings

Publication Date: May 1999

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