Understanding the distribution of outdoor pollutants around a building envelope, generated by sources located in its vicinity, is important when choosing the location of building ventilation system intakes, as well as for quantifying the exposure of people living or working in the building. A systematic experimental characterisation of the number concentration of submicrometre particles was undertaken around the envelope of six buildings (both low- and high-rise) at different distances from a road (the main pollution source). The concentrations were measured using two TSI Scanning Mobility Particle Sizers. PM2.5 concentrations were also monitored around the low-rise buildings using two TSI DustTraks. For the three high rise buildings the concentration of fine and ultra-fine particles decreased in most cases to about 50-60% from the approximate ground level readings (between heights of 0 to 6 m), to full building height (from 24 to 33 m above the ground). Measurements of submicrometre particle number concentrations as well as PM2.5 fraction in the envelope around low-rise isolated buildings did not show any significant trends from the front to the rear of the building. The sensitivity of PM2.5 measurements to a small number of larger particles, possibly from sources other than vehicle emissions, was observed.