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City of London Local Plan 2036: Draft for consultation

The City of London Local Plan 2036 consultation runs until 28 February 2019. We have digested the documents and summarised some of the key elements.

Offices

As anticipated, policies within the draft plan prioritise the delivery of 2 million square metres of additional office space by 2036. Protection of existing office space remains strong and the provision of new types of space, including flexible and co-working floorspace, is also supported.

Quality of life

The draft plan also has a wider remit, with a focus on quality of life and the quality of the built environment, as well as the vitality and vibrancy of the city’s retail, night-time economy and cultural offer. The vision for 2036 is for a more vibrant city for workers, visitors and residents alike. This includes support for the Cultural Mile, identified in the London Plan, which will see development for creative enterprise, cultural uses, art and other visitor facilities around Barbican, the Museum of London site and Smithfield.

Quality of life considerations focus on air quality, active and low emission transport, health services for residents and workers, as well as social and community facilities. The impact of servicing and traffic is a key concern, with policies relating to freight consolidation and sustainable ‘last mile’ logistics. There is also a concern around equality of opportunity for those living in the city but who struggle to access top jobs.

Greening the city

The focus within the built environment includes support for the Mayor’s Urban Greening Factor for new developments and a desire for wider urban greening and investment in open spaces. In order to improve the pedestrian environment there is an aim to reduce the impact of vehicle traffic and to address footway crowding, particularly given the projected growth in the daytime population.

Housing

The plan retains a restrictive approach to new housing, which should be in or near existing identified clusters, but does adopt the Mayor of London’s increased housing target of 146 new homes per year. Affordable housing of 35% should be on site, but there is also scope for payments to be invested in the existing city-owned estates. There is a restrictive approach to student housing too, including an affordable unit requirement.

Tall buildings and growth

Tall buildings are positively supported within the City Cluster, to support more employment floorspace and to increase the provision of ‘world class’ buildings. Other areas which may include sites suitable for tall buildings include Chancery Lane/Farringdon, Gresham Street/London Wall, Aldgate and Tower, and Liverpool Street. In addition, key areas of change are identified as: Smithfield and Barbican, City Cluster, Aldgate and Tower, Pool of London, Blackfriars, Fleet Street, and Liverpool Street, some of which are subject to height restrictions.

Viability

It is also noteworthy that viability assessments will be made available on the Planning Register albeit there will be an opportunity to present a case for confidentiality of part or all of an assessment.

Consultation runs until 28 February 2019. Please contact Oliver Jefferson for further information.

3 January 2019