Transforming The Fleet Street Quarter area

Transforming The Fleet Street Quarter area
Credit Courtesy of Gensler

A radical new place-making and public realm vision has today been revealed by the Fleet Street Quarter BID, representing over 350 businesses across a 43 hectare footprint of the western part of the City.

The proposed plan could be the biggest transformation that this part of the City has seen since Bazalgette Embankment 150 years ago.

This estimated £80 million strategic vision could see the public realm transform over the next decade to meet increasing demands from businesses, occupiers, residents, and visitors.

An investment which would mirror the area’s extensive development pipeline totalling £5 billion, which includes ground-breaking schemes including the City of London’s new Justice Quarter at Salisbury Square.

The proposed vision seeks to maximise the potential for Fleet Street in line with the area’s new designation in the City of London’s ‘Local Plan’ as a Key Area of Change.

NOW READ: Concerns over Hindu hate crimes

For 2000 years, the Fleet Street Quarter area has shown an extraordinary capacity for re-invention, with this next period of evolution set to be the most radical yet. The proposed 10 year public realm vision identifies 34 public realm opportunities that could be seen across the 43 hectare area.

The Fleet Street Quarter BID commissioned global architecture, design, and planning firm Gensler, Norman Rourke Pryme and UP Projects to develop this new vision for the area, in consultation with the City of London and other key stakeholders and businesses.

The strategy titled ‘Fleet Street Quarter’s Era of Change’, was launched this week at an event to over 100 business and stakeholders from across the Fleet Street Quarter area.

A key commitment in its BID Proposal, the proposed vision aims to deliver an attractive and sustainable community for workers, visitors and residents, supporting local business growth in the area over the next ten years.

The Fleet Street Quarter Era of Change vision highlights the following improvements:

  • The creation of 3,000 sq m in additional pedestrian space
  • 100% increase in plants, insect and bird species
  • 100% increase in safe cycling routes
  • 75% increase in seating space for residents and visitors
  • 50% increase in more workers returning to the office
  • 50% increase in footfall to historic and cultural destinations
  • 50% increase in ground floor planting
  • 25% increase of public realm usage in hours per day (evenings and weekends)
  • 25% increase in trees planted in the area

The proposed public realm vision is intended to support the re-positioning of the Fleet Street Quarter area as a key contributor to the City of London’s economy. Green shoots are already emerging in the Fleet Street Quarter area, as it looks to develop its support of the local economy. Since 2018, the total number of jobs in the area has grown by 5.9%, with GVA per worker increasing by 13% in the same period.

The Fleet Street Quarter Era of Change Strategy targets an improved experience for retail and leisure, discovery and work, a blend identified by Gensler’s recent City Pulse Index Findings as criteria for a great Central Business District (CBD) experience.

Lady Lucy French OBE, Chief Executive of the Fleet Street Quarter BID comments: “This project is a once-in-a-generation opportunity that calls for a joint collaborative approach to the ongoing improvements of the streetscape and public spaces. The sheer scale of this transformation is directly what we know our businesses and investors in the area want to see, it is a direct response to the voices of our levy payers and the wider community. This area is steeped with a rich history but now it is about taking it forward into its next phase of transformation, ensuring the area is globally competitive and catering for a new generation of visitors, workers and businesses.’

For the latest headlines from the City of London and beyond, follow City Matters on TwitterInstagram and LinkedIn.