Effects of planting and structural configurations on human thermal comfort in a schoolyard
Schoolyards are places where children spend a lot of their day. In highly populated Greek cities, schoolyards are usually surrounded by dense and elevated buildings, while the grounds are largely hard surfaces comprising asphalt, concrete, bricks and stone paving. This combination creates considerable thermal discomfort, especially in hot or Mediterranean-type climates. A study exploring the redesign of schoolyards to improve thermal comfort and heat stress conditions is presented in this paper. This included use of a microclimate model ENVI-met (V4), first validated using experimental data and then later applied to different case studies in schoolyards of Volos, a coastal city in central Greece. Microclimate measurements were carried out and thermal comfort and heat stress conditions evaluated by means of the physiologically equivalent temperature (PET, °C). The impact of materials, structures, obstacles, and different tree species on thermal comfort was also assessed. The results of the measured and simulated values were similar, including air temperature, relative humidity, solar radiation and mean radiant temperature (Tmrt). ENVI-met was then used to evaluate different landscape design proposals to improve outdoor human thermal comfort that prevail in schoolyards.
Antoniadis, D., Katsoulas, N., Tsirogiannis, I.L. and Kittas, C. (2017). Effects of planting and structural configurations on human thermal comfort in a schoolyard. Acta Hortic. 1189, 229-234
schoolyard design, mean radiant temperature, physiologically equivalent temperature, ENVI-met V4 software