Urban Cooling Strategy

The City of Kingston has developed an Urban Cooling Strategy that presents its vision for 'Creating a Cool Kingston' and is seeking community input.

Background

Extreme heat has a major impact on the health and wellbeing of the community and more broadly the productivity of the economy. Heat waves, in particular, affect the health and wellbeing of the very young and senior citizens and are especially dangerous for people living with a range of pre-existing medical conditions.

What causes urban heat to accumulate in particular areas?

As cities grow and populations increase, the way heat accumulates across the landscape can change. The term ‘urban heat island’ is used to describe a part of a city or town where heat has accumulated, causing temperatures to rise above a regional average. Several factors contribute to the accumulation of urban heat. These include:

  • Removal of trees – which provide shade as well as contribute to cooling through evapotranspiration
  • Removal of other vegetation – which contribute to cooling through evapotranspiration, and which helps to keep moisture in the soil
  • Covering of soil with hard surfaces – like driveways and buildings
  • Using dark construction materials – black bitumen, roofs, walls hold heat more than light coloured surfaces
  • Human activity – such as driving combustion engine vehicles and using air-conditioners.

Understanding urban heat in Kingston

Research was undertaken to understand where heat accumulates in City of Kingston using land surface temperatures, and how this intersects with those in our community who are most vulnerable to heat.

The Urban Cooling Strategy recognises a range of other key strategic documents at a City of Kingston including the Biodiversity Strategy, Climate Change Strategy and the Integrated Water Cycle Strategy. At a State and Metropolitan Melbourne level this strategy complements the Victorian Government's Plan Melbourne (Outcome 6 Action 91), and Resilient Cities Living Melbourne Strategy.

Image: Land surface temperatures averaged from two warm days in the 2018-2019 summer season.

Creating a Cool Kingston

The vision for Kingston is a municipality with no urban heat islands. It is a community that actively manages the impacts of urban heat on people and the environment through decisions that encourage urban cooling.

To achieve this vision, the Urban Cooling Strategy outlines 5 strategic directions:

  • Urban Greening – increasing vegetation and canopy cover across our municipality
  • Planning and Building – facilitating cooling efforts on residential, commercial and industrial property
  • Cool Council Buildings and Assets – incorporating cool materials and elements into Council buildings, roads, paths etc.
  • Emergency and Health Response – focusing on the most vulnerable to heat impacts in the community, working to increase their knowledge, skills and networks to lessen the impacts of urban heat
  • Education, Engagement and Partnerships – this Strategic Direction underpins the others – building the understanding of the impact of extreme heat on health and wellbeing, and how to reduce the impacts of heat

Have your say

We are interested in your feedback on the proposed Urban Cooling Strategy. We would appreciate if you could take the time to provide comments on the draft strategy by Monday 16 December.

You can share your views by:

  • Taking part in our online survey via the link below
  • Make a further submission by emailing info@kingston.vic.gov.au, mailing PO Box 1000 Mentone or calling 1300 653 356


The City of Kingston has developed an Urban Cooling Strategy that presents its vision for 'Creating a Cool Kingston' and is seeking community input.

Background

Extreme heat has a major impact on the health and wellbeing of the community and more broadly the productivity of the economy. Heat waves, in particular, affect the health and wellbeing of the very young and senior citizens and are especially dangerous for people living with a range of pre-existing medical conditions.

What causes urban heat to accumulate in particular areas?

As cities grow and populations increase, the way heat accumulates across the landscape can change. The term ‘urban heat island’ is used to describe a part of a city or town where heat has accumulated, causing temperatures to rise above a regional average. Several factors contribute to the accumulation of urban heat. These include:

  • Removal of trees – which provide shade as well as contribute to cooling through evapotranspiration
  • Removal of other vegetation – which contribute to cooling through evapotranspiration, and which helps to keep moisture in the soil
  • Covering of soil with hard surfaces – like driveways and buildings
  • Using dark construction materials – black bitumen, roofs, walls hold heat more than light coloured surfaces
  • Human activity – such as driving combustion engine vehicles and using air-conditioners.

Understanding urban heat in Kingston

Research was undertaken to understand where heat accumulates in City of Kingston using land surface temperatures, and how this intersects with those in our community who are most vulnerable to heat.

The Urban Cooling Strategy recognises a range of other key strategic documents at a City of Kingston including the Biodiversity Strategy, Climate Change Strategy and the Integrated Water Cycle Strategy. At a State and Metropolitan Melbourne level this strategy complements the Victorian Government's Plan Melbourne (Outcome 6 Action 91), and Resilient Cities Living Melbourne Strategy.

Image: Land surface temperatures averaged from two warm days in the 2018-2019 summer season.

Creating a Cool Kingston

The vision for Kingston is a municipality with no urban heat islands. It is a community that actively manages the impacts of urban heat on people and the environment through decisions that encourage urban cooling.

To achieve this vision, the Urban Cooling Strategy outlines 5 strategic directions:

  • Urban Greening – increasing vegetation and canopy cover across our municipality
  • Planning and Building – facilitating cooling efforts on residential, commercial and industrial property
  • Cool Council Buildings and Assets – incorporating cool materials and elements into Council buildings, roads, paths etc.
  • Emergency and Health Response – focusing on the most vulnerable to heat impacts in the community, working to increase their knowledge, skills and networks to lessen the impacts of urban heat
  • Education, Engagement and Partnerships – this Strategic Direction underpins the others – building the understanding of the impact of extreme heat on health and wellbeing, and how to reduce the impacts of heat

Have your say

We are interested in your feedback on the proposed Urban Cooling Strategy. We would appreciate if you could take the time to provide comments on the draft strategy by Monday 16 December.

You can share your views by:

  • Taking part in our online survey via the link below
  • Make a further submission by emailing info@kingston.vic.gov.au, mailing PO Box 1000 Mentone or calling 1300 653 356