Ipswich virtual reality explores solutions to Urban Heat Island Effect

Put on a pair of Virtual Reality goggles and experience how small changes to our urban environment can make a big difference to a burning issue.

Division 2 Councillor Nicole Jonic said two virtual reality experiences about urban heat island effect would be held in Ipswich Central and Ripley as part of the Sustainable Ipswich program.

“This is a collaboration between Ipswich City Council, Griffith University and the University of the Sunshine Coast,” Cr Jonic said.

“This interactive experience shows how urban surfaces such as concrete and roads absorb and retain heat, making urban areas hotter and hotter – even dangerous during heatwaves.

“The 10-minute simulation created from local data then explores how different design elements can help cool the urban area and contribute to a more sustainable and liveable city.”

Griffith University Professor Karine Dupre said the VR experience would help researchers understand how urban cooling measures change people’s experience of a space and which solutions they prefer.

“For example, how do they feel if we added 100 trees along the street or shade structures?” Professor Dupre said.

“This will help provide guidance around what could be implemented in these different places where urban heat island effect is an issue.”

University of the Sunshine Coast Dr Silvia Tavares said the VR experience formed part of a three-year collaborative project that has included heat mapping using sensors in various locations across Ipswich.

“Urban Heat Island Effect is an important issue for all cities and urban areas because it has a range of health and wellbeing impacts,” Dr Tavares said.

“This event has modelled specific Ipswich locations, but the findings are important for urban areas across South-East Queensland.”

Sign up for the free virtual reality experience at Faye Carr Park, Ripley on Saturday 29 October.

Sustainable Ipswich is an annual celebration of everyday actions we can take as a community to create a more liveable city.

It is an opportunity for the community and local businesses to be involved in promoting and celebrating sustainability and our environment.

Sharing stories, knowledge and ideas helps us all live, eat and play the sustainable way!

By working together and making informed choices, we can create a liveable and resilient city for current and future generations.

For more information about the program and register for events and activities click here.


Bees wax cloth wraps workshops: 22 October
Ripley Town Centre

Craft your own natural bees wax cloth wraps for sustainable food storage and learn how to care for your wraps. Learn more about the importance of bees to our environment and local ecosystems. For workshop details see

Plant Swap and Community Garden Basics: 22 October
Leichhardt – One Mile Community Centre (community garden area)

Join Ipswich Plant Swap and exchange garden goodies with like-minded people. From 11am join Savour Soil Permaculture to learn about local food system and food security, preparing your soil and garden planning. Event details and registrations will be on

Great Southern Bioblitz with Springfield Lakes Nature Care: 28-31 October

Join an international period of intense biological surveying. The event attempts to record all living species within designated areas across the southern hemisphere. Join the survey by downloading citizen science app iNaturalist.

Read also:

>>> Sustainable Ipswich to fill October with inspiring environmental events

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