City of London to convert vacant space into 1.5k homes post-pandemic

The City of London must adapt to post-pandemic economic and social trends in order to remain a world-leading ecosystem, and as such is set to use vacant space and aim for at least 1,500 new residential units by 2030, according to a new report published by the City of London Corporation.

‘The Square Mile: Future City,’ produced by the City Corporation’s Recovery Taskforce in partnership with Oliver Wyman, sets out a vision for the next five years with detailed actions to enhance the City’s competitiveness and attractiveness.

The report commits the City Corporation to a number of activities to deliver this vision, including the exploration of new ways to use vacant space as at least 1,500 new residential units by 2030; working with providers and operators to future-proof the City’s communications, energy and transport infrastructure; a newly rebranded Small Business Research and Enterprise Centre – replacing the existing City Business Library; exploring traffic-free Saturdays or Sundays in Summer; and providing new and improved public spaces that include opportunities for culture and exercise.

The Recovery Taskforce’s aim in all this is reportedly to ensure the Square Mile is “the world’s most innovative, inclusive and sustainable business ecosystem as well as an attractive place to work, live, learn and visit.”

As such, the report focuses on three key dimensions of the City’s offer: fostering an innovative ecosystem for businesses and talent; ensuring a vibrant offer that engages workers, visitors, learners and residents; and delivering outstanding environments that support people and businesses with sustainable buildings, high quality streets and public spaces.