Applying Passive Cooling at an Urban Level: Case Study of Dubai, UAE

Hanan M. Taleb, Ghadeer M. Jumah


This research employs the integrative process of sustainable urbanism by applying passive design strategies to promote a sustainable neighbourhood lifestyle. A selected neighbourhood in Dubai is analysed and assessed in terms of its existing achievements regarding sustainability. It does so by simulating a site’s potential, its limitations, characteristics, existing buildings, transportation status, climate, and the Dubai culture in order to optimize and develop design criteria that meet all the requirements at different levels for a sustainable neighbourhood. To permit this, five passive cooling strategies are applied. The methodology adopted for this study is the assessment of the implications of proposed designs through the use of Envi-met software simulation. As per LEED a variety of facilities are included, and land use is differentiated to enhance social interaction and to meet all the daily needs of community users in such a way as to maximize the potential of a sustainable urban design process compared with the conventional way. The sustainable corridor was also oriented toward the northwest which helped generate many wind loops towards in the direction of the central plaza and the community hall and which increased wind speed by 6m/s. Additionally, in the proposed design, open spaces and green areas were increased by 30% through the creation of a major central plaza, a walkable environment, and water features to enhance livability and comfort in the community. Additional daily facilities and entertainment destinations are provided to capitalize on the proposed open spaces. The study yielded several significant findings; most notable was the reduction of surface temperature by approximately 2.5 degrees centigrade as a result of increasing the green areas by 30% and introducing a large water body and water features on-site.

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