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Microclimate guidelines

Date updated: 4/08/2022

Thermal Comfort Guidelines

The Thermal Comfort Guidelines are a new technical tool which enhances the understanding of the microclimatic qualities of the City of London’s public spaces as well as a methodology to assess the impact of a new development on the microclimate of the City’s streets, parks, public roof gardens and terraces and other public spaces.

The technique involves merging wind, sunlight, temperature and humidity microclimate data at a seasonal level to obtain a holistic understanding of Thermal Comfort, how a microclimatic character of a place actually feels to the public.

This technique is new in the British planning system, leading the way to considerate development, as we seek to understand and manage the impact that large scale developments will have on the local area, at an early stage in the planning process.

Developers are expected to conduct thermal comfort studies in parallel with the wind microclimate and sunlight studies to contextualise the results in terms of overall thermal comfort.

Expert judgement by experienced microclimate engineering consultants will always be needed for thermal comfort studies.

Thermal Comfort Guidelines for developments in the City of London PDF (6MB)
Date submitted: 3/12/20
Climate Source File
Date submitted: 15/12/20

Wind Microclimate Guidelines

The wind guidelines provide general advice on wind micro climate studies required as part of planning applications in the City of London. They focus on the primary factors that affect the quality and consistency of wind micro climate studies. They are the first definitive guidance in the UK, reinforcing the City of London Corporation’s position at the forefront of this important planning issue.

Good wind micro climate conditions are necessary to create outstanding public spaces in the City. Adverse wind effects can reduce the quality and usability of outdoor areas.

Developers are encouraged to address wind micro climate issues at an early stage in their plans by appointing experienced consultants, discussing with planning officers and commissioning early-stage studies to quantify the wind micro climate conditions.

Expert judgement by experienced wind engineer will always be needed for wind micro climate studies, particularly for issues that are not covered by these guidelines.

Wind Microclimate Guidelines PDF (7.2MB)
Date submitted: 8/10/20

Planning advice notes on other microclimate issues

Solar Convergence Planning Advice Note PDF (300KB)
Date submitted: 17/07/20
Solar Glare Planning Advice Note PDF (900KB)
Date submitted: 17/07/20
Sunlight Planning Advice Note PDF (1MB)
Date submitted: 17/07/20