Mapping heat vulnerability in Middleton, Nova Scotia

A Heat Stress Pilot Study of Middleton, Nova Scotia produced a map showing that less than 5% of the town’s surface area is considered to be a “cool” environment (e.g., one that provides shade) and is typically characterized by remnant pockets of natural vegetation. Twenty percent is considered to be a “hot” environment (e.g., exposed to the sun), with the main contributors being asphalt roadways and parking lots. Further analysis considered linkages with vulnerability, as well as opportunities for improvement. Current amenities within the town that provide reprieve from the heat include facilities with climate control, an outdoor public pool and splash pad, as well as trees along the riverbanks. Potential physical design interventions to reduce heat exposure include installing shade structures—such as shade-providing trees, awnings, tents and gazebos—in the exposed commercial core, parks, playgrounds and parking lots.

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