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Keeping Cool in Granada   You are logged in as Guest
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Posts: 3247
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

Keeping Cool in Granada 

For those who plan to visit Granada during the summer, the following article appeared in the August 14 edition of the Washington Post. The temperature may not reach the levels of Seville, but it can still get hot. In addition to the covered streets mentioned in the article, I wonder if some of the outdoor cafes in Granada use cooling mist, as is the case in Washington, DC, Phoenix, Tucson, and other cities that experience high summer temperatures?

(Quote) Keeping cool in the sizzling summer: The covered streets of Granada, Spain

By Kevin Ambrose

Question: How does a city reduce the urban heat island effect? Answer: Shade the city. Granada, Spain shades many of their streets and sidewalks with long strips of cloth. Granada’s summer is hot and dry. The warm season lasts from mid-June to mid-September with an average daily high temperature near 90°F. In late July, Granada’s average high temperature peaks at 95°F. Granada’s humidity levels, however, are much lower than what we experience in Washington, D.C. during the summer. Their region has a semi-arid climate.

I visited Granada last week and was surprised to see the covered streets. With the region’s low humidity, I noticed that conditions in the shade felt fairly comfortable despite afternoon temperatures that soared to near 100°F during my visit. But if I ventured out of the shade into the direct sunlight, the heat suddenly seemed intense. Thus, strolls down Granada’s shaded streets felt fine despite the hot weather. And because Granada’s roads stay shaded during the day, the road surfaces don’t absorb as much of the sun’s heat which would radiate back into the air later in the evening or at night. Thus, the urban heat island effect is minimized in Granada.

Covered streets in Granada work well because their roadways are narrow and their summer weather is dry and calm. Can you imagine the effort to cover the streets in Washington, New York, or Chicago? Even if the streets could be covered, our frequent thunderstorms and occasional Derechos would probably shred the cloth by mid-summer. Plus, the cloth might actually trap humid air close to the surface and have an opposite effect of promoting sultry conditions at street level. Our climate is not well-suited for covered streets. Can Phoenix or Las Vegas make covered streets work? Those cities have a summer climate that more closely resembles Granada but their streets are extremely wide in comparison to Granada. It’s too much real estate to cover. For now, I think it’s a Granada thing.

If you travel to Spain, try to check out Granada and visit Alhambra while you’re in the country. It’s definitely worth the trip. And if you visit in summer, try to keep cool under the covered streets. (Unquote)



And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 14 2015 23:16:46
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