Singapore : High-rise buildings plan on mitigating ‘Urban Heat Island’

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The urban heat island effect is becoming a concern in a cities across the globe. High-rise buildings which block wind have a large surfaces that absorb heat. The lack of vegetation and the heat generated by energy usage are some of the  causes of this effect. Singapore, as a high density city, is in need of an efficient plan to mitigate the issue.

More than 200 scientists, engineers, builders and architects worldwide assembled together for the Fourth International Conference on Countermeasure to Urban Heat Islands, hosted for the first time in Singapore, to discuss ways to improve the urban environment and lower temperatures.

According to Dr. Teo Ho Pin, Mayor of North West District, the development of “Eco-Towns” is one measure to counter the urban heat island effect. Punggol Eco-Town, one of residential blocks projects by HDB, makes use of passive design implementation: it was strategically oriented to face the prevailing winds in order to get natural cross ventilation.

These residential blocks are also fitted with the smart technology and eco-friendly features: Solar photovoltaic panels can be found on each of the housing blocks rooftops, providing clean and sustainable energy to meet the energy demand. Energy efficient lighting and motion sensors are also installed along common corridors and staircases.

Singapore’s greening efforts to transform the city into a garden were highlighted by Dr. Theo. These efforts include building more parks and waterways, and incorporating green spaces in high-rise buildings.

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