HEAT: What can we do with it?

Platform: Ecologies Sustainability Regeneration (ESR)

Related Staff : McKee DC

Students: Bao Chun, Cheung Pak Yin, Huang Xinliu, Lau Kok Yi, Lee Gavin Yu Hin, Lee Hsing Jou, Ma Tin Wai, Shum Yeuk Hang Joshua, So Cheuk Ying Sharon, Tsang Hoi Lam Jessica Mary, Tse Pui Shan, Wong Tsz Ching

Studio name: Architectural Design 5

Ecologies Sustainability Regeneration

Urban Heat Stress in Central

Due to the competing pressures of climate change and population growth, Hong Kong’s urban fabric is growing more compact and warmer, and thus more dependent upon mechanical systems to achieve thermal comfort. This urban phenomena has altered the city’s subtropical climate and produced a complex array of super-heated micro-climates squeezed between tall buildings. Heat is intensified by the city’s anthropogenic activities, building operations, and dense urban morphology, and stratified in section from the street level to the rooftops. By obstructing existing environmental flows, urban buildings disrupt the thermal environment of their surroundings by interfering with air movement, levels of exposure, and the process by which solar radiation is reflected, transmitted, and absorbed (Yannas, 2013). What can we do about heat in Hong Kong? The Heat Studio engages the Ecology Sustainability Regeneration (ESR) research platform by exploring heat as a fundamental parameter for design in warm climates. The studio research  problematizes the causes of urban heat stress in Hong Kong by examining the daily, seasonal, and sectional variations found in the micro-climates of Central. Defining the conditions for a symbiotic relationship between buildings and the urban climatology of their surroundings are the primary concern of this studio. Knowledge and understanding of the physical principles underlying this relationship, along with the computational tools to translate them into architectural propositions form the core design research agenda for this studio.

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