Dense urban area

Urban microclimate: overcoming obstacles to high density resilient cities

6 January 2017

City Hall, London

Working with the CIBSE Resilient Cities Group, we brought together 65 policy, industry and academic experts to consider the current state of knowledge and understanding of the various built form-driven effects on urban performance and resilience. We also addressed the practice requirements of tackling the unintended local environmental consequences on urban resilience.

Built form effects range from changes in air and surface temperatures, air quality, the wind field, thermal comfort, building energy consumption and daylight availability which are currently outside most microclimate and energy management assessments.

Chaired by Professor Gerald Mills, the event provided an opportunity for researchers and practitioners to review and debate our current understanding of the interdependent dynamic relationships between high density urban typologies, urban climate, energy management, use of green infrastructure and the health and well-being of urban dwellers.

Leading experts in urban heat islands, pollution/particle dispersion, health and wellbeing, energy, daylighting and facilities management were invited to share their state-of-art knowledge. Attendees then discussed the gaps in knowledge and collective purpose that limit the built environment community’s ability to create more integrated, resilient cities.


Event chair: Gerald Mills

Associate Professor, UCD and Board member of the International Association for Urban Climates

George Adams

Resilient Cities Group Chair and UK Engineering Director of SPIE UK

Urban climates

Topic chair: Geoff Levermore

Emeritus Professor, University of Manchester

Sue Grimmond

University of Reading

Lee Chapman

University of Birmingham

Urban microclimate

Topic chair: Marialena Nikolopoulou

University of Kent

Maria Kolokotroni

Brunel University London

John Mardaljevic

Loughborough University

Energy management

Topic chair: Richard Lorch

Editor of Building Research & Information

Philip Steadman


Darren Robinson

University of Nottingham

Facility management

Topic chair & speaker: Joanna Harris


George Adams


Health & wellbeing

Topic chair & speaker: Derek Clements-Croome

University of Reading

Paul Littlefair

Building Research Establishment (BRE)

See also Paul’s publication Site layout planning for daylight and sunlight: a guide to good practice.

Urban greening

Topic chair: Hywel Davies


Dr Audrey de Nazelle

Lecturer in air pollution management, Imperial College

Rob Mackenzie

University of Birmingham