Since 2008 Open-City has been supporting and promoting sustainable cities through a variety of initiatives. We champion the importance of ‘designing in’ sustainability, not just for individual buildings but also across neighbourhoods, communities and the wider city.

This theme has run through all our work over the past six years, including:

  • Green Sky Thinking Week
    In its 6th year, our leading programme for built environment and property professionals showcasing innovative and practical solutions to greening London's built environment
  • Greener City exemplar strand showcasing annually the best in innovation in sustainable design and retrofit via the Open House London Event, featuring more than 50 renovated or refurbished buildings and retrofitted ecohomes
  • Green Debate, as part of the Greener City exemplar strand of Open House, spotlights sustainability to a 250+ public and professional audience
  • the Green Building Guide, an introduction to sustainable design with case studies in partnership with the UK Green Building Council (in two editions)
  • The Lives of Buildings:
a major programme of more than 50 debates, talks and tours exploring the idea of architectural renewal, in partnership with English Heritage and the Mayor of London's Story of London Festival
  • 25 leading emerging architectural practices showcasing their innovations in sustainable design via a ‘pecha-kucha’ event and in their own studios across London (Green Sky Studios)
  • “Our buildings, our neighbourhoods, our cities?” panel discussion in partnership with the Royal Society exploring how scientists, engineers and architects can work with one another and with the wider community to design cities that are socially and environmentally sustainable
  • the Sustainable Southwark building showcase and resource, in partnership with the London Borough of Southwark
  • My Green School - Open-City devised curriculum-linked lesson plans to encourage students to explore the main themes of sustainable design through a series of subject based activities



Sustainability is now becoming a key part of people's thinking - for refurb as well as new build. Initiatives such as Open-City's Green Sky Thinking can only but help to highlight leadership and vision for the green agenda."
Richard Blakeway, Deputy Mayor for Housing, Land and Property and key note speaker at Green Sky Thinking Launch

"As a firm that is passionate about real estate, we at Henderson believe that Open-City fills an important role in increasing awareness of the architecture, buildings, urban planning and community spaces that surround us. Most importantly, they understand and endorse the need for a collaborative and cross-disciplinary approach in order to achieve a sustainable future for the cities in which we live and operate."
Mike Sales, Managing Director and CIO of Henderson Global Property.


The changing face of London


Read about all our pioneering programmes designed for people to learn about and advocate for the value of good design through first-hand experience


Regular polls, surveys and research into Londoners' attitudes towards design quality and built environment issues


Find out how Open-City provides independent advice and support to communities