Vegetation and Environmental Comfort

  • Gustavo Cantuaria


It is the aim of this section to contribute with information on the potential of vegetation to provide outdoor microclimates thermally more comfortable than in unvegetated places. It introduces the subject of vegetation and its relation to mankind. In a first stage, it shows the integration of man and nature in different moments in time. By looking at past examples, it is the intent to show how man once needed, eventually worked with, and then appreciated being linked to environment. These lessons which have been forgotten are still valuable today. Our fantasies, our hopes, our inspiration and appreciation of art, and our image of paradise are all linked to nature. Landscape and climate are two broad terms with indefinite connotations used by artists, poets, ecologists, and architects, among others. All have acclaimed nature in their own interpretations. Nevertheless, architecture is the form of art with most impact on people and their perceptions. “Architecture reflects, materializes and eternalizes ideas and images of ideal life. Buildings and towns enable us to structure, understand and remember the shapeless flow of reality and, ultimately, to recognise and remember who we are” (Pallasmaa 1996). Our living environment “strengthens the existential experience, one’s sense of being in the world, essentially giving rise to a strengthened experience of self” (Pallasmaa 1996). The closer we bring nature to our dwellings, the better use we can make of it, gaining in physiological and psychological aspects.


Urban vegetation Microclimatic effects Passive cooling Environmental comfort 


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Gustavo Cantuaria
    • 1
  1. 1.Post-Graduate Program in ArchitectureUniversity Center of Brasilia – UniCEUBBrasiliaBrazil

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