Urban Governance and Social Innovation

Cool Towns Intervention Catalogue

Proven solutions to mitigate heat stress at street-level


Built environments are increasingly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Most European towns and cities have developed horizontally over time but are currently in the process of further densification. High-rise developments are being built within city boundaries at an unprecedented rate to accommodate a growing urban population. This densification contributes to the Urban Heat Island phenomenon and can increase the frequency and duration of extreme heat events locally. These new build-up areas, in common with historic city centres, consist mainly of solid surfaces often lacking open green urban spaces.

The Intervention Catalogue is the third publication in a series produced by the Cool Towns project and has been designed as a resource for decision makers, urban planners, landscape architects, environmental consultants, elected members and anyone else considering how to mitigate heat stress and increase thermal comfort in urban areas. Technical information on the effectiveness of the full array of intervention types from trees to water features, shading sails to green walls, has been assessed for their heat stress mitigation properties, expressed in Physiological Equivalent Temperature (PET). The results shown in factsheets will help the process of making an informed, evidence based, choice so that the most appropriate intervention for the specific spatial situation can be identified.

Reference Spanjar, G., Bartlett, D., Schramkó, S., Kluck, J., van Zandbrink, L., & Föllmi, D. (2023). Cool Towns Intervention Catalogue: Proven solutions to mitigate heat stress at street-level. CoE City Net Zero, Faculty of Technology, Amsterdam Univeristy of Applied Sciences.
1 September 2023