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City of London Corporation adopts new lighting guidance to meet net zero goals

The City of London Corporation Planning and Transportation Committee is to adopt a new initiative that will require developers to submit detailed plans to minimise light pollution, at the early stages of their planning applications for buildings in the City’s Square Mile.

Following a consultation undertaken by the City’s planning officers which included a series of public events and a night walking tour, the Planning and Transport Committee voted unanimously in favour of adopting the Lighting Supplementary Planning Document, with public and stakeholder feedback also highly supportive.

Created in partnership with Light Architecture specialists Speirs Major, the guidance asks developers to produce a high-level Lighting Strategy early on in the building design process which will help to achieve a more sustainable city. Developers must also consider how lighting will complement surrounding architecture and heritage, as well as safety, accessibility and inclusion.

The Lighting SPD will provide guidance for developers on lighting buildings and the spaces between them, covering the design, delivery, operation, and maintenance of artificial light within the City of London.

Included in the adopted guidance is a commitment to promote a ‘Considerate Lighting Charter’ for operators of already existing commercial buildings across the Square Mile. Existing building owners, operators and occupiers are being encouraged to sign up to the charter and manage their lighting systems in ways that make a positive contribution to the City.

Chairman of the City of London Corporation Planning and Transport Committee, Shravan Joshi, said: “Our Climate Action Strategy makes us the first UK governing body to have a fully funded net zero commitment that covers all emissions.   

“The Lighting SPD will make the City more characterful and a more attractive place to visit at night, celebrating its heritage but also delivering a sustainable response to urban lighting that takes into account energy efficiency, carbon reduction and making the City safer for all communities.”

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