Microclimate Assessments

Our Wind Microclimate packages are suitable from early concept development, through to planning and pre-building sign off: from single building to large scale masterplanning.

We will guide you through the entire process, ensuring all wind planning requirements are met and that any mitigation that is required is sympathetic to the overall design of the scheme and importantly, commercially viable.


Early Massing Studies

Wind Microclimate assessments are now becoming necessary for many areas of the UK, especially for taller buildings. Wind microclimate should be included as a potential risk for site developers, either at the purchasing stage or design stage. Therefore early assessments are key to understanding the potential risk associated.

GIA uses high resolution CFD modelling which is highly correlated to wind tunnel testing, allowing our clients to obtain a true representation of the wind conditions. When employed at the early stages of a project, this can aid in understand the commercial viability of a project.

If strong winds exist, GIA provide commercial and innovative mitigation solutions, developed in tune with the design team – promoting a more efficient development journey – saving on considerable time and costs.


Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) & Wind Tunnels

CFD and Wind Tunnels are the two main tools wind engineers use to analyse the wind environment around a development.

Wind tunnels blow air over scaled models of the development within surroundings. Specialist equipment measures the velocity at discrete locations across the development. Wind tunnels have been used for many years to predict airflow velocity across a development. It is an established tool in the built environment.

CFD is the digital equivalent of wind tunnels. It uses high performing computers to solve complex numerical methods to predict airflow movement. It is widely used across many sectors to really understand the cause of aerodynamic features. CFD is widely used in the built environment to predict the airflow around buildings.

GIA use VU.CITY CAD for the surrounding context which is accurate down to 15cm. This is much more detailed than is possible with a wind tunnel. The information obtained from a CFD or Wind Tunnel test is combined with weather data to obtain a measure of the Lawson Comfort and Safety criteria.


Outdoor Thermal Comfort

The “feels like” temperature experienced in an outdoor setting will be dependent on the combination of wind chill, temperature, solar gain, and humidity.

We provide outdoor thermal comfort studies in line with local guidelines, which combines modelling to inform how comfortable a space is for how much of the year.



Good wind microclimate conditions are necessary for creating outstanding public spaces: adverse wind effects can reduce the quality and usability of outdoor areas, and lead to safety concerns in extreme cases.

With the existing tower cluster that makes up the London city skyline, set to grow further, the City of London have published general guidelines for wind microclimate studies, now required as part of the planning application for new development proposals.

City of London Wind Microclimate Guidelines

City of London Guidelines (thermal comfort)

Leeds Wind Microclimate Toolkit