Effects of atmospheric stability and urban morphology on daytime intra-urban temperature variability for Glasgow, UK

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)782–791
Number of pages10
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Early online date2 Feb 2018
StatePublished - Jun 2018


This study investigates the joint effect of atmospheric conditions and urban morphology, expressed as the Sky View Factor (SVF), on intra-urban variability. The study has been carried out in Glasgow, UK, a shrinking city with a maritime temperate climate type, and findings could guide future climate adaptation plans in terms of morphology and services provided by the municipality to overcome thermal discomfort in outdoor settings. In this case, SVF has been used as an indicator of urban morphology. The modified Pasquill-Gifford-Turner (PGT) classification system was adopted for classifying the temperature monitoring periods according to atmospheric stability conditions. Thirty two locations were selected on the basis of SVF with a wide variety of urban shapes (narrow streets, neighbourhood green spaces, urban parks, street canyons and public squares) and compared to a reference weather station during a total of twenty three transects during late spring and summer in 2013. Maximum daytime intra-urban temperature differences were found to be strongly correlated with atmospheric stability classes. Furthermore, differences in air temperature are noticeable in urban canyons, with a direct correlation to the site’s SVF (or sky openness) and with an inverse trend under open-air conditions.


  • atmospheric stability, urban morphology, climate change , urban design, intra-urban temperature differences