Urbani izziv Volume 32, No. 1, June 2021 : 111-122

UDK: 712.253:551.588.7
doi: 10.5379/urbani-izziv-en-2021-32-01-004


   Article in PDF format



Marie Therese Fallast

PLANUM Fallast & Partner GmbH, Gradec, Avstrija

Sanela Pansinger

Adasca, Gradec, Avstrija

Gerald Krebs

University of Technology, Institute of Hydraulic Engineering and Water Resources Management, Gradec, Avstrija

Martin Moser

Quadratic GmbH, Gradec, Avstrija

Andreas Zobl

Quadratic GmbH, Gradec, Avstrija



Systematically retrofitting city streets: Meeting the demands of climate change through multifunctional climate-responsive street gardens



The reintroduction of green infrastructure is a recognized approach to mitigating heat islands and flash floods in urban areas. Depending on its type and extent, green infrastructure (GI) can reduce local urban temperatures significantly and at the same time reduce the risk of flooding. This article views the streetscape as an important area of activity for GI-based climate-adaptation interventions for two main reasons: it serves as a conduit for urban human activity and mobility, and it acts as a significant heat store. The approach proposed unites some key elements that can form the basis for all future public-realm (streetscape) design, promoting a truly climate-responsive urban environment. These include reduction of sealing to only essential areas, decentralized water management using rain-garden technology, low maintenance, aesthetic planting supporting biodiversity, and sensor-based monitoring of thermal comfort parameters to optimize measures. It utilizes low-cost sensors for obtaining thermal comfort data to locate urban heat islands. It also proposes a GIS-based decision tool bringing together relevant data sets: temperature, level of surface sealing, and flood risk, as well as aspects such as the location of services, traffic, and urban planning. A pilot application as part of an ongoing Austrian government-funded climate adaptation project is described in which this methodology has been applied.


Key Words

public space, climate change, stormwater management, street drainage, sensor technology and digitization





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