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Wellbeing in the City

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Merchant Land were pleased to recently attend the City Property Associations webinar on wellbeing in the City of London.

The webinar explored what design measures developers have been implementing in new office buildings which are focused on wellbeing such as air quality, light levels, public realm, ventilation, green spaces and outdoor spaces. All of these items are crucial in increasing bio-diversity and improving the air quality in the City of London which according to recent research carried out by Public Health England (PHE) is amongst the worst in the country.

Marianne Fredricks (Chairman of the Health and Wellbeing Board in the COL) also went on to explain what practical steps the City of London corporation are taking in order to promote wellbeing in the square mile. A lot of these items have been accelerated due to COVID and include:

• Re-designing of roads (one-way systems)
• Incorporated new public spaces (Bank Junction and Holborn Circus)
• Reduced speed limits on most roads to 20mph, looking to decrease this further to 15mph
• Planners encouraging developers to propose buildings that are more outward facing with amenity areas (balconies, roof gardens, terraces, winter gardens)
• Widening of pavements, to de-congest footpaths for pedestrians
• Increased number of cycle lanes
• New City Plan 2036 which is due to go to public consultation imminently, includes various provisions, policies and strategies to do with wellbeing and the key theme to achieve some of these goals are working in partnerships with developers, residents, workers etc.

At Merchant Land Health and Wellbeing has been high on our agenda for the last 12-18 months and this is reflected in our two most recent planning applications at 33 Creechurch Lane and 114 Windmill Road.
You can learn much more about our plans by visiting this link
You can watch the full recording of the CPA webinar by clicking on the following link