Outdoor thermal comfort study on a district level as part of the housing programs in Abu Dhabi and Al Ain, United Arab Emirates

Lindita Bande, Rahma Adan, Kim Young, Raghad Ghazal, Mukesh Jha, Amna Aldarmaki, Atmah Aldhaheri, Asma Alneyadi, Sharina Aldhaheri, Mira Khalifa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has witnessed fast growth in urban development in the past four decades. A plan to build 7270 houses by 2021 has been initiated by the local authorities. Different local sustainability guidelines are being implemented, including the Public Realm Manual in Abu Dhabi. These local guidelines are tailored to consider the hot and arid climate of the UAE as well as the applied materials, the inclusion of greenery, shading devices, etc. Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Al Ain are cities that have imposed the application of such guidelines. Additionally, the newly developed housing programs match the governmental plan. To understand the effect of these design programs on the outdoor thermal comfort (OTC), further investigations are necessary for each city. The most widely built prototype is detached villas, which result in untreated waste areas without shading or greenery. In the old local neighborhoods, Arabic houses were built next to each other to maximize the shading and to ease pedestrians’ walkability. This study aims to examine the districts where the housing programs are applied and to determine the most effective strategy to minimize the outdoor air temperatures and enhance walkability. The methodology implements the following processes in order: district analyses of the buildings as well as the externally applied materials, microclimate site measurements, ENVI-met (main software used) models of the current and future scenarios, results and recommendations. The strategies have different impacts in both cites due to the microclimate and other conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number264
Pages (from-to)1-23
Number of pages23
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


  • ENVI-met
  • Hot arid climate
  • Housing program
  • Outdoor thermal comfort
  • Site measurements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Ecology
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation


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