Visual Impact Assessments
Visual Impact Assessments are crucial to communicating potential significance of impacts on views to surrounding communities of a project. Assessment of impacts and rating of these impacts with regard to landscape character and visual amenity from viewpoints as a result of the project are an important consideration for Local Authorities making decisions with regards to approving projects.
Methodologies used are typically firstly identifying the existing environmental values in regard to visual amenity in the project location, and secondly evaluating the visual impacts of the project with a range of graphical, tabular and statutory tools to determine the significance of overall expected impacts.
This is completed using a range of approaches including field visits and desktops reviews. Assessments are completed in reference to any statutory tools such as Local Authority Planning Schemes which often can include guidelines or Scenic Amenity Studies. The use of 3D virtual reality and modelling is a simple tool that is useful to assist in predicting impacts on the surrounding community.
The assessment of predicted impact significance can include a combination of factors such as:
- the Receivers Visual Sensitivity Rating;
- the Distance of View;
- the Duration of Visual Impact;
- the Visual Absorption Capability;
- the Magnitude of Change;
- the predicted success of mitigation proposals to any particular viewshed.
Mitigation strategies related to landscape typically include the consideration of the potential Visual Absorption Capability (VAC) of the proposed landscape and the predicted success of this.
Citicene have experience in delivering these types of assessments for large utility suppliers. Utilizing a range of assessment tools, we can provide suitable reports to satisfy the Local Authority requirements and requests.