The Shade Shortage: ASU’s Efforts And Struggle To Shield Students In The Valley of The Sun
While ASU’s Tempe campus and the surrounding downtown Tempe area are among the most shaded areas in the city, the Sonoran Desert heat can still make the local landscape an exceedingly dry, hot, uncomfortable and even unhealthy environment. Ariane Middel, an urban climatologist, director of the university’s SHaDE Lab, and an ASU assistant professor with an affiliation in the Fulton Schools, says the amount of concrete and asphalt in the area produces much of the heat radiation that makes the environment especially prone to sizzling temperatures. Heat-related sickness can be one result of the situation. The problem, however, can give ASU an opportunity to lead the way in coming up with more effective urban shading strategies.