Urban Heat Island Effect
The Promise of Urban Food Forests
Planting food-producing trees can offer both shade and a source of healthy foods in concrete-dominated neighborhoods.
Urban Design for Sustainability
The way we build cities can have significant impacts on public health and equity.
An Untapped Energy Source: Underground Garages
A European study measured ambient air and groundwater temperatures in underground parking garages and found that the heat generated by these structures could potentially power thousands of households.
How Extreme Heat Impacts Heart Health
A higher number of high heat days correlates with more cardiovascular deaths, according to new research.
The Drawback to ‘Cool Pavement’
New research suggests that cooling pavement treatments can actually make pedestrians standing on it feel hotter.
How to Scale Up Heat Mitigation
As heat waves intensify, cities are seeking out heat mitigation techniques that can be applied widely and benefit entire neighborhoods.
Planting More Trees to Protect and Save Lives
A new study estimates that more than a third of premature deaths from excessive heat can be prevented by planting more trees in cities.
How Pollinators Fight Warming Cities
Researchers are starting to understand how urban bee populations can support healthy green spaces and reduce the urban heat island effect.
Investing in Green Schoolyards
California's budget now includes an unprecedented investment of $150 million to create green schoolyards and schoolyard forests at K-12 schools across the state.
Cool Planning for a Hotter Future
Global warming increases the importance of designing buildings and communities that are comfortable, efficient, and safe in hot conditions.
What Is the Urban Heat Island Effect?
Man-made surfaces and urban density contribute to higher temperatures, intensifying heat waves and posing a growing danger to public health.
How Rotterdam’s Green Rooftops Fight Urban Heat
An elevated park in Rotterdam shows how green roofs can cool cities and create public parks in tight quarters.
Parks as a Weapon Against Climate Change
The 2022 ParkScore finds that cities are increasingly employing green space as a tool for mitigating heat and extreme weather effects, but the distribution of parks remains inequitable.
Extreme Heat as a Public Health Crisis
Cities can take action to improve conditions during extreme heat events and prevent heat-related deaths, many of which occur in low-income communities.
Student-Designed Cool Sidewalk Could Reduce 'Urban Heat Island' Effect
Researchers at the University of New Mexico created a sidewalk design using materials that would reduce heat absorption and require fewer materials than traditional concrete sidewalks.
As Heat Waves Become More Common, Bus Shelters Are Needed to Keep Transit Riders Onboard
As climate change brings prolonged, intense heat waves to cities once associated with rain and cold weather will have to attend to the lack of shelter provided to bus and transit riders.
Report: Skyscrapers a Driving Factor of the Urban Heat Island Effect
As cities build upwards in an effort to create more housing and increase walkability, research shows that tall buildings intensify heat and contribute to increased carbon emissions.
The Problem with Tree Planting Programs
Ambitious campaigns to plant trees in urban areas often don't take into account the complexities of growing and maintaining effective urban forests.
How Extreme Heat Threatens the Electrical Grid
Higher demand for electricity and lower capacity for production due to more intense heat waves are straining the power grid and causing concern for future energy production.
Tree Equity Score: The U.S. Needs 522 Million More Urban Trees
As climate change intensifies the urban heat island effect, poorer neighborhoods bear the brunt of tree canopy inequity.
City of Grand Forks, North Dakota
HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research
Harvard GSD Executive Education
City of Laramie, Wyoming
Colorado Department of Local Affairs
Lassen County Planning and Building Services
This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.