How factors of land use/land cover, building configuration, and adjacent heat sources and sinks explain Urban Heat Islands in Chicago

Paul Coseo, Larissa Larsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

113 Scopus citations

Abstract

Urban Heat Islands (UHI) are urban and suburban areas with elevated surface and air temperatures relative to surrounding rural areas. This study combines variables from the remote sensing and urban climatology publications to explain UHI intensity in eight Chicago neighborhoods. During the summer of 2010, we collected air temperature measurements within an urban block in each neighborhood. Consistent with remote sensing research that measures surface temperature, the predictors of elevated nighttime air temperatures were land cover variables. At 2. a.m., the urban block's percentages of impervious surface and tree canopy explained 68% of the variation in air temperature. At 2. a.m., the other physical measures of urban canyon and street orientation were not significant. At 2. a.m. during extreme heat events, the urban block's percentages of impervious surface and tree canopy explained 91% of the variation in air temperature. At 4. p.m., the only significant explanatory variable was distance to industrial sites and this explained 26% of the variation in air temperature. At 4. p.m. during extreme heat events, there were no significant predictors. We believe this research illustrates the importance of differentiating time of day for residential and non-residential areas in UHI mitigation efforts and the need to include waste heat in future UHI investigations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)117-129
Number of pages13
JournalLandscape and Urban Planning
Volume125
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Mitigation
  • Neighborhoods
  • Urban Heat Island
  • Urban planning
  • Vulnerability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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