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Abstract

Previous studies conducted on Beirut have historically overlooked research in the field of urban microclimate. A better understanding of how Beirut urban development, including zoning and building regulations, has affected the current urban thermal climate is crucial in order to analyse how different factors have led to the structure of the city, including the quality of urban space and the degradation of its natural environment. Within the context of limited government capability to set out strategies for sustainable urban development, this paper examines the historical evolution of the Lebanese building regulations specifically in Beirut and investigates the impact of changes in building regulations on the city’s urban microclimate. The review highlights the historical urban growth of the city and identifies the dynamics that have contributed to the uncontrolled expansion of the built up areas. Analyses linked to the direct effects of the urban morphological features forming a different local microclimate in Beirut. Initial findings highlight the correlations between building regulations and the different urban design factors and how they affect Beirut local climate, resulting in the formulation and adaption of the necessary strategies to alleviate unhealthy urban conditions.

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