It’s mid-July and the Boston Metro Region has already experienced several days over 90 degrees, including a heat wave at the start of July when there were five 90+ degree days.
Climate science shows that these types of hot days will increase in intensity and number over the next few decades. Historically, Boston experienced an annual average of only 11 days over 90 degrees, but by 2030 that number could rise to as many as 40. While hot days can feel like an uncomfortable nuisance to some, high temperatures can be a real health threat – especially to vulnerable populations.
That’s one reason why MAPC launched Keep Cool in 2016. The interactive online map helps users find free, public places to cool off in their neighborhoods. Locations include water play areas, splash pads, pools, beaches, community centers, and libraries. Keep Cool also shows locations of cooling centers during heat emergencies, which are typically declared when temperatures reach over 95 degrees for an extended period of time.
The cities and towns featured in Keep Cool are all part of the Metro Mayors Coalition Climate Preparedness Taskforce, a 15-municipality coalition with shared goals to prepare for the impacts of climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The communities in the Metro Mayors Climate Preparedness Taskforce are Arlington, Boston, Braintree, Brookline, Cambridge, Chelsea, Everett, Malden, Melrose, Medford, Newton, Quincy, Revere, Somerville, and Winthrop.
In addition to the map, Keep Cool also includes information and tips for staying safe during high heat days and resources for rebates on air conditioners.
Help us spread the word about Keep Cool through social media with these sample posts:
Wanted to share a great resource from @MAPCMetroBoston. #KeepCool helps find local spots to beat the heat in 15 cities and towns around Boston: location-based suggestions for local pools, libraries, cooling centers, splash pads, etc. https://keepcool.mapc.org/
(On very hot days) It’s hot today – make sure your family, friends, and neighbors are safe in this heat wave. #KeepCool is a good resource for #heatsafety tips and can help you find nearby cooling centers, public buildings with AC, and other places to cool off. https://keepcool.mapc.org/