City of London planning committee chair said the images clearly illustrate that the City office is here to stay, and the future of the Square Mile remains bright.
The City of London Corporation has today released computer-generated images (CGI) showing how the Square Mile’s skyline will look by the mid-2020s.
Key development guidance included in the City plan encourages urban greening, new pedestrian routes through tall buildings and the inclusion of flexible and adaptable office floorspace.
The new images capture all major developments which have been resolved to approve by the City Corporation’s Planning and Transportation Committee over the past 12 months including 50 Fenchurch Street, 55 Gracechurch Street, 60 Aldgate High Street, 70 Gracechurch Street and 2-3 Finsbury Avenue.
The majority of these tall buildings fall within the “City Cluster” area, located in the eastern corner of the Square Mile, which is already home to some of the capital’s most iconic skyscrapers.
As a “key area of change” identified in the City Plan 2036, the City Cluster is set to grow to close the gap between the Walkie-Talkie building and the group of towers, while introducing more animated ground floor spaces. Changes will also include pedestrian priority areas, a push for off-site consolidation and the re-timing of freight and deliveries outside of peak hours.
“These new CGI images clearly illustrate that the City office is here to stay, and the future of the Square Mile remains bright,” said Alastair Moss, chair of the planning and transportation committee at the City of London Corporation.
“As we look towards the recovery from the pandemic, our planning pipeline is extremely busy with the anticipation of a swift return to the City as the leading place for business in a world-class environment”
“The support shown from developers and investors who remain committed to providing world-leading office space in the City of London has been phenomenal. These developers have embraced trends – such as flexible workspace, world-class additions to the public realm and including an array of wellness practices such as greening – to ensure office buildings in the City remain fit for the future.
“As we look towards the recovery from the pandemic, our planning pipeline is extremely busy with the anticipation of a swift return to the City as the leading place for business in a world-class environment.
“We have every confidence in a thriving and sustainable Square Mile, and these new images give a glimpse into the next chapter of the City of London.”
Peter Murray, curator-in-chief of New London Architecture, London’s independent centre for debate, discussion and information about the future shape of the capital, described the imagery as a remarkable picture of how the City of London will look later this decade, combining existing buildings with those under construction as well as towers that have planning permission but are yet to be built.
He added: “Love them or loathe them, tall buildings provide a striking graphic image of the confidence that developers and investors have in a city. These towers, designed by some of the world’s leading architects, cluster together on the east of the Square Mile to protect historic views of St Paul’s Cathedral and provide a supercharged centre of agglomeration which will be such an important driver of economic success as we emerge from the pandemic.
“This is a very encouraging picture for the future of the City, of London and UK plc.”
“The towers cluster together on the east of the Square Mile to protect historic views of St Paul’s Cathedral and provide a supercharged centre of agglomeration”
The City of London Corporation’s planning team continues to work closely with developers who are refining schemes which are currently at a pre-application stage. There are currently approximately six further tall building (of over 75 metres) applications being discussed.
The City of London Corporation recently published its The Square Mile: Future City report, produced by the City Corporation’s Recovery Taskforce, in partnership with consulting firm Oliver Wyman, that sets out a vision for the next five years with detailed actions to enhance the City’s competitiveness and attractiveness.
It 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.
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