London City Hall Case Study

City Hall is one of the capital’s most symbolically important projects, which expresses the transparency of the democratic process and demonstrates the potential for a wholly sustainable, virtually non-polluting public building. The headquarters occupies a prominent site on the Thames beside Tower Bridge. It houses an Assembly chamber, committee rooms and public facilities, together with offices for the Mayor, Assembly members, the Mayor’s cabinet and support staff, providing 12,000 square-metres of accommodation on ten levels.

The Assembly chamber faces north across the river to the Tower of London, its glass enclosure allowing Londoners to watch the Assembly at work. Members of the public are also invited to share the building: a flexible space on the top floor – ‘London’s Living Room’ - can be used for exhibitions or functions, and the public commands the rooftop, where a terrace offers unparalleled views across London. At the base is a piazza with a café, from which the riverside can be enjoyed. Lifts and gentle ramps allow universal access throughout the building.

The building has been designed so that it has no front or back in conventional terms. Its shape is derived from a geometrically modified sphere, developed using computer modelling techniques.

This form achieves optimum energy performance by minimising the surface area exposed to direct sunlight. Analysis of sunlight patterns throughout the year produced a thermal map of the building’s surface, which is expressed in its cladding. A range of active and passive shading devices is employed: to the south the building leans back so that its floor-plates step inwards to provide shading for the naturally ventilated offices; and the building’s cooling systems utilise ground water pumped up via boreholes from the water table. These energy-saving techniques mean that chillers will not be needed and that for most of the year the building will require no additional heating. Overall, it will use only a quarter of the energy consumed by a typical air-conditioned office building.

The EY Foundation – an independent charity founded by EY in 2014 – helps young people who face barriers in the labour market to find pathways into work, higher education or self-employment. We want to make a measurable, positive impact on young people from disadvantaged groups in the UK. Together with employers, social enterprises, local communities across the UK and our network of corporate partners, we have helped to benefit hundreds of young peoples’ working lives by providing skills training, paid work experience and mentoring.

Together the aim is to deliver programmes like Smart Futures that provide young people disadvantaged in the labour market with paid experiences of work; helping them to make a successful transition into their first job, higher education or self-employment.

Smart Futures is a great paid experience of work that can improve a young person’s chances of getting a job after school or going onto higher education.

The ten month programme, for Year 12 students in England and 5th Year students in Scotland, starts with paid work experience during Easter* and summer. The programme includes opportunities to learn more about professional services and work with other industries, which might include healthcare, the arts, or financial services. And every young person on the programme is allocated a mentor.

In 2017 Smart Futures is running in Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, London, Bristol, Reading, the North West (Manchester and Liverpool), Yorkshire (Leeds and Hull), Luton, Newcastle and Southampton. Do you meet the criteria? Then we want you to apply today!

In 2016, 100% of our 223 students rated the programme as Good to Excellent, with 96% saying that programme significantly improved their networking and communication skills. If you would like to learn more about the Smart Futures programme, or are an employer that would like to be involved in the programme, please contact us. You can also find out more by visiting the EY Foundation website.


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