Redmore Environmental was commissioned to undertake an Air Quality Assessment in support of a planning application for the extension of the existing Heathrow Marriott Hotel, off Bath Road, London.
The proposals included the construction of a part five part six storey building to provide over 250 hotel bedrooms and associated infrastructure.
London Hotel Air Quality Assessment
The site was located within an Air Quality Management Area which has been declared by the London Borough of Hillingdon due to high pollution levels. An Air Quality Assessment was therefore undertaken to determine whether the proposal would cause air quality impacts at nearby sensitive locations and if future occupants of the proposed scheme would be exposed to unacceptable air quality conditions. An Air Quality Neutral Assessment was also undertaken in accordance with the requirements of the Greater London Plan to ensure the development would not have a negative impact on air quality.
Assessment Methodology and Findings
Large developments can cause adverse impacts through release of fugitive dust emissions during construction works. As such, a construction dust assessment was completed as part of the assessment. The impacts associated with earthworks, construction and trackout were considered in accordance with the relevant Institute of Air Quality Management (IAQM) guidance. Following the analysis, it was concluded that good practice control measures would reduce dust emissions to an acceptable level during construction.
Impacts can also be caused by traffic exhaust emissions associated with vehicles travelling to and from the hotel. An assessment of potential impacts was therefore undertaken using guidance from the IAQM document Land-Use Planning & Development Control: Planning for Air Quality. This indicated that due to the anticipated trip distribution, the number of vehicle movements along the majority of roads were below the IAQM criteria. Two roads in the vicinity of the site were predicted to have greater than 100 vehicle movements per day. As such, further analysis of these roads were undertaken. Review of the local area highlighted there were no locations of relevant exposure at the roadside. Based on this, potential air quality impacts associated with the operational phase were not predicted to be significant.
Potential exposure to poor air quality was considered through review of local monitoring results. This indicated that in recent years air quality records had shown compliance with the relevant air quality objectives. It was possible to come to the conclusion that it was unlikely that future occupants would be exposed to poor air quality. Therefore dispersion modelling was not required.
Air Quality Neutral Assessment
There is a requirement within the Greater London Plan for all new, large, developments to be Air Quality Neutral. This aims to ensure that new sites do not lead to further deterioration of existing air quality. To complete this assessment, building and transport emissions for the proposal are compared to a benchmark level. If the new development is likely to exceed this benchmark level then mitigation measures such as electric vehicle charging points are likely to be required to reduce potential impacts.
Potential emissions from the development were assessed in order to determine compliance with the Air Quality Neutral requirements of the London Plan. The results indicated an acceptable level of building and transport emissions from the scheme, as such the proposed development was considered to be Air Quality Neutral.
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If you require an Air Quality Assessment to support your planning application then please get in touch with a member of the team today to find out how we can help you.