Richmond Council to use innovative sensor technology to monitor air quality in the borough

Richmond Council is one of the first London Boroughs to join the ‘Breathe London’ trial which gives access to a network of air quality sensors and pollution data.

This will help significantly reduce the costs of sourcing accurate air pollution data for local projects and schemes and provide a previously unseen detailed picture of local pollution. As part of the InnOvaTe Project, the Council will combine Breathe London air quality monitors and Vivacity traffic sensors to provide data which will give a deeper understanding of different transport modes, movement patterns and their impact on air quality, and consider future schemes aimed at improving air quality.

Councillor Alexander Ehmann, Chair of Richmond Council’s Transport and Air Quality Committee: 

“Air quality is the one of the most severe threats we are face. Using the InnOvaTe Project to combine the power of the Breathe London air quality monitoring with Vivacity’s traffic sensors, Richmond will be able to maximise the potential of both technologies. The combined datasets will provide a granular picture of the links between transport, air quality and exposure as pollution levels change through the course of a day, week or month.

“Bringing these together will help us understand the impact of things happening on a London scale, such as the ULEZ, and detailed information around initiatives, such as our School Streets, and will help shape our future policies.”

The sensors will be installed borough wide: including town centres, areas of development, such as the Stag brewery; areas under consideration for transport initiatives such as Burtons Road and around the Royal Parks; schools located near busy roads, including East Sheen Primary School and St Stephens School; and some schools trialling school streets, such as St Richard Reynolds College in Twickenham, St John the Baptiste Primary School and Stanley Junior School in Teddington and The Russell School in Ham. The air quality monitors will also monitor in real-time. Breathe London was launched by the Mayor of London at the end of last year, and plans to install more than 100 air quality sensors at hospitals, schools and other priority locations to aid London’s green recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.


About the InnOvaTe Project

South London Partnership is working with London Councils to deliver an exciting and innovative “Internet of Things” (IoT) project across the five south London Councils of Croydon, Kingston upon Thames, Merton, Richmond upon Thames and Sutton. This initiative is funded by the Strategic Investment Pot (SIP) as part of the London Councils Business Rates Retention scheme which is administered by the City of London Corporation, and hopes to improve people’s lives through the delivery of a multi-purpose Internet of Things (IoT) platform, which will connect various sensors across borough boundaries. The project is led by Sutton Council, which was selected to oversee the project on behalf of the other boroughs.