The Urban Heat Island of Cincinnati, Ohio

  • Kenneth M. Hinkel University of Cincinnati
Keywords: Air Temperature, Instrumentation, Urban Climatology, Urban Heat Island, Urban Meteorology


The city of Cincinnati, Ohio, occupies a continental position in mid-latitude North America. With a metropolitan population of about 2 million, the city core area is heavily urbanized. Using a network of data loggers to monitor air temperature every 15 minutes, we demonstrate the existence of a strong urban heat island (UHI). The urban core area averaged 2.0° C Wormer than  a rural reference site over a one-year period, but the heat island was stronger in summer due to solar forcing. Heat advanced from the city center toward nearby sites in wooded highlands appear to increase the Air temperature by about 1.00 C. The strength of the UHI increased as wind velocity decreased. On a daily basis, the UHI in the city core reaches its peak intensity in the mid-Afternoon but persists throughout the evening hours. Heat advances to surrounding sites demonstrates a similar but modulated daily pattern. These effects are strongly influenced by meteorological conditions; during cloudy and windy periods, the UHI is weak and the spation-temporal variability is limited.


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