Urban heat islands in Paris – Book 1

Urban heat islands in Paris – Phase 1

Due to its urban density, Paris has a milder climate than the rest of the Île-de-France region. This climatic phenomenon, which has been documented since the 19th century, is called “urban heat island” (UHI).

The 2003 heat wave brought to the fore the eminently problematic nature of this climatic characteristic, it provoked an increase in the death rate which profoundly effected people and led to the overall questioning of urban practices and their effects on the climate of a city.

In order to gain knowledge about the Parisian heat island, Apur helped Météo France and the Scientific and Technical Centre for Buildings CSTB, from 2007 to 2012 in the research program EPICEA (Multidisciplinary study on the impacts of climatic change in the Parisian Conurbation). As complementary to this research work, Apur carried out  thermographic reports on Parisian public  space in order to allow the general public greater awareness of  urban climatic phenomena.

This document, addressed to developers and deciders, synthesises the knowledge gathered by Apur over the last , on the issue of the Parisian urban heat island. It particularly describes the link which exists between urban practices and the micro-climate in Paris. This document is the first part of a two part study.

Contents :


Reading guide
General information 
Undestanding Parisian UHI : main factors of the climate's influence
  • Water
  • Vegetation
  • Surface materials of public spaces
  • Materials used in buildings
  • The urban form
  • Human activity
First measures for adapting
  • Reduce thermal pollution
  • Create “Urban Cool Islands”
  • Change surface materials
  • Capitalize on underground coolness
  • Thermal regulations for buildings do not address summertime comfort satisfactorily.
Conclusion and future prospects
This study is part of a series of  5 notebooks dedicated to urban heat islands in the heart of the Parisian conglomeration:


Documents to download

  • Urban heat islands in Paris – Book 1

    Format : pdf, 14.81 MB