Applications open: New projects given chance to secure backing to transform London public spaces
An influential group of business leaders in London, which champions major public realm projects, is seeking a new project to back.
The West End Streets Steering Group (WESt), run by BusinessLDN, brings together the likes of The Portman Estate, British Land, The Crown Estate and Grosvenor to work with the West End Business Improvement Districts and public sector stakeholders to promote funding and delivery of major London public realm projects.
At any one time, the group champions three priority projects. Following the completion of stage one at Strand Aldwych, which has converted a busy roadway into a new public space, the group are now seeking a replacement scheme to support.
Previous projects that have been supported by WESt have included the redesign of Leicester Square, development of Camden’s West End Project, transformation of Hanover Square and New and Old Bond Street.
Lydia Clarkson, Chair of WESt group, said: “Our priority projects transform spaces for the future by creating vibrant new destinations that benefit Londoners and fit in with city’s net zero targets. The group has been involved in some of the capital’s biggest public space makeovers and we look forward to reviewing a wide range of innovative and ambitious applications.”
John Dickie, Chief Executive at BusinessLDN which runs WESt, added: “The West End is one of the UK’s most important commercial, retail and tourist locations. The public realm projects championed by WESt help to maintain London’s reputation as an attractive destination for all. We are excited to see what new schemes are in the pipeline.”
Applications are now open and the deadline for submissions is 5pm on 6 October 2023. Projects will be assessed against the following selection criteria…..
Delivers high quality public realm to the benefit of businesses, residents and visitors (including improvements to accessibility, cultural engagement, decluttering, cleanliness, opportunities to dwell, safety and perception of safety, especially for women and girls)
Takes an innovative approach to traffic management – reducing congestion and vehicular movements, and improving conditions for walking and cycling (including improvements to surface connections between London’s neighbourhoods, innovative freight management)
Contributes to London’s environment strategy and net zero goals, particularly improvements to air quality and urban greening.
Sustains and delivers improved economic growth with consideration of whether this is an area in need of investment/regeneration.
Is high profile, future-proofed and deliverable within five years.
The two ongoing priority projects for WESt include the Portman Estate’s Marble Arch Regeneration and Heart of London Business Alliance’s Charing Cross road. The Marble Arch Regeneration scheme seeks to transform the area, to create a safer space that boost the economies of Oxford Street and Edgeware Road. The Charing Cross Road project will transform the St Martin’s Lane and Charing Cross Road area into a safer and greener space for those who live, work and visit there.
The application form can be found and downloaded here
A list of shortlisted applications will be announced next month.