On the Thermal Resilience of Venetian Open Spaces

Barbara Gherri, D. Maiullari, Chiara Finizza, Marco Maretto, Emanuele Naboni

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Venice is known for its urban heritage fragility. The city is experiencing an increase in yearly average temperatures affecting outdoor–indoor comfort and average energy expenditure. Owing to existing literature demonstrating how local microclimate depends on urban density, form, and materials, this investigation studies the influence of the changing local climate on Venetian vernacular open spaces, known as Campi. Based on the comparison of contemporary weather and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) future predictions for the 2050 scenario, this investigation highlights how Campi’s open spaces and the surrounding buildings, canals, and green public areas contribute to building climate resilience. By employing advanced modelling, the study analyses microclimate and outdoor comfort with respect to users’ perception of Physiological Equivalent Temperature (PET). The ENVI-met tool is used to simulate the thermal behaviour of two representative Campi: SS. Giovanni e Paolo and S. Polo. Despite significant temperature growths, Venetian urban fabric characteristics seem to play a crucial role in strengthening the climate resilience of open spaces, thus preserving outdoor comfort quality in a warmer future. The analysis shows how the historical matrix of open spaces and buildings cooperate. Thus, this study offers a contribution to how built heritage should be considered in light of climate change
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4286–4303
Number of pages18
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • climate change
  • climate resilience
  • outdoor comfort
  • urban form
  • Venice


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