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Sustainability 2016, 8(8), 822;

The Effect of a Denser City over the Urban Microclimate: The Case of Toronto

Faculty of Engineering and Architectural Science, Ryerson University, Toronto, ON M5B 2K3, Canada
School of Human Settlements and Civil Engineering, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710049, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Matheos Santamouris and Constantinos Cartalis
Received: 14 July 2016 / Revised: 17 August 2016 / Accepted: 17 August 2016 / Published: 19 August 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Heat Island)
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In the last decades, several studies have revealed how critical the urban heat island (UHI) effect can be in cities located in cold climates, such as the Canadian one. Meanwhile, many researchers have looked at the impact of the city design over the urban microclimate, and have raised concerns about the development of too dense cities. Under the effect of the “Places to Growth” plan, the city of Toronto is experiencing one of the highest rates of building development in North America. Over 48,000 and 33,000 new home permits were issued in 2012 and 2013 respectively, and at the beginning of 2015, almost 500 high-rise proposals across the Greater Toronto Area were released. In this context, it is important to investigate how new constructions will affect the urban microclimate, and to propose strategies to mitigate possible UHI effects. Using the software ENVI-met, microclimate simulations for the Church-Yonge corridor both in the current situation and with the new constructions are reported in this paper. The outdoor air temperature and the wind speed are the parameters used to assess the outdoor microclimate changes. The results show that the new constructions could increase the wind speed around the buildings. However, high-rise buildings will somewhat reduce the air temperature during day-time, as they will create large shadow areas, with lower average mean radiant temperature. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban heat island effect; urban microclimate; high-rise construction; outdoor comfort urban heat island effect; urban microclimate; high-rise construction; outdoor comfort

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Berardi, U.; Wang, Y. The Effect of a Denser City over the Urban Microclimate: The Case of Toronto. Sustainability 2016, 8, 822.

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