Communities in Transition, Future of London’s series of practitioner-led field trips, launched in October 2013 with the aim of highlighting diverse approaches to regeneration and renewal across London. The visits focus on the priorities, mechanisms and relationships necessary to bring about meaningful change in London’s communities.
In spring 2015, our Communities in Transition field trips resumed with a new theme for the year: anchor regeneration.
Anchor projects have long served as a catalyst for regeneration in London: they can be significant employers, offer cultural and leisure amenities, and act as a visible sign of progress in long-term renewal projects.
There are also risks in basing regeneration schemes around large anchor projects: they must involve local communities or become alienating; changing their timing can cause mistrust; and downturns in the fortunes of anchor institutions can have a ripple effect through an over-dependent local economy.
Our 2015 programme looks at six types of anchor regeneration: stadia, hospitals/life sciences, big retail, civic centres, universities, and markets. In each of these contexts, we explore the possibilities and constraints offered by regeneration based around anchor institutions, how to build strong ties to the local area and what best practice can be replicated elsewhere in London.
These visits are aimed at public-sector practitioners in planning, regeneration, economic development, housing and related areas, and are a great way to pick up new ideas, debate and make new connections across the capital. Private-sector practitioners are welcome to join where space is available.
Typically, trips start with short presentations at a key venue, include practitioner-guided walks with one or two stops, and end with a chance to network over coffee or drinks.