Postgraduate Dissertation

The Impact of Urban Fabric and Vegetation on Residential Building Performance in Zayed Town Bahrain


The aim of this study is to assess the current impact of residential neighborhoods in Zayed town, Bahrain on microclimate and how it affects building cooling loads. Also, this study explores strategies in order to improve microclimate, therefore reducing building cooling loads. The study starts with an introduction to the area, climate and energy consumption in the residential sector in Bahrain. Then, literature review, exploring various strategies and their impacts on the microclimate from several regions in the world, including Bahrain. Furthermore, this research piloted a study on two residential neighborhoods to investigate the building condition, building materials, urban materials, and vegetation. In so doing, the relevant data were gathered from reliable sources which was then used to model variety of real-life scenarios by using computational simulation studies for validation and prediction. Moreover, Envi-met was used to assess the current impact on microclimate. Next, reviewed strategies from literature were applied on the computer model, and results were compared. The study found that materials currently used have a low albedo, resulting in elevated air temperature by 5% during the day compared to surrounding areas. Moreover, the materials also can absorb and re-emit heat, raising temperatures at night. The study also found that neighborhoods with low or without vegetation experience higher air temperatures during the day than compared to neighborhoods with vegetation. Finally, the study concluded that utilising high albedo asphalt and paving, paired with vegetation, reduced air temperatures by 15-20% (depends on orientation and density of vegetation and albedo of surface materials) and surface temperatures by 38%, resulting in a 10% decline for cooling degree days which reduced building cooling loads by 9%.The study also investigated the impact of integrating roof PV, in order to reduce cooling loads as part of the government’s plan to integrate PV panels with housing units, It was concluded that this can contribute to up to 22% of total building cooling loads, thus reducing cooling load by 31%.

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Embargo end: 2021-08-07

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Mustareehee, Motaz


Rights Holders: Mustareehee, Motaz
Supervisors: Borna, Mehrdad

Oxford Brookes departments

School of Architecture

Degree programme

MSc Sustainable Architecture: Evaluation and Design



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