Comfortable City Temperatures (12-30-21)

Speak and Salbitano evaluated comfort in a range of different urban places.  They report that The present study is based on a campaign of meteorological measurements in a large number of sites using a mobile data collection system to allow a human-centred approach. . . . In the case study of Florence, local physical characteristics of the sites; Sky View Factor (SVF), tree shade, ground surface cover, and canyon effect, can moderate human exposure to potentially uncomfortable thermal conditions during a typical Mediterranean summer. Significant differences in Universal Thermal Comfort Index (UTCI) were observed between treeless piazzas and streets and landtypes with trees or high height to width ratio (narrow alleys). Varying levels of SVF and tree cover in the sites allowed the construction of multivariate models, which revealed that, during common summer afternoon conditions, decreases of SVF by 12.5% or increases of tree cover by 25% can reduce the UTCI by 1°.”

Andrew Speak and Fabio Salbitano.  “Summer Thermal Comfort of Pedestrians in Diverse Urban Settings:  A Mobile Study.”  Building and Environment, in press,