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Outdoor Thermal Comfort Assessment of Educational Precincts during Spring Time in Melbourne Australia

Published in 2015 by
  • Usha Iyer-Raniga (Scientific and Technical)

Type of document: Best practices, case studies

Understanding the thermal effects of the built environment on the users' thermal perception and behavior, provides an insight into the suitability and usability of outdoor urban environments.

Further information

This paper aims to address the extent to which thermal conditions can explain the thermal perception and users' behavior in an urban precinct. A field survey which included structured interviews using a standard questionnaire and observation of users' activities was carried out while the microclimate conditions were monitored. The survey was conducted in three study sites, with distinctive morphology and patterns of land use, across the RMIT University Campus City (RUCC) in Melbourne, Australia. This case study targets the university population of students, staff and visitors from different backgrounds. In total, 368 questionnaires were deployed during 21 days in November 2014. The preliminary results show that climatic conditions can significantly affect the users' thermal perception. This suggests the importance of considering passive design strategies in urban environments. Furthermore, the participants' climate/cultural background is recognized as a factor for thermal perception in an outdoor environment.