The Evolution of London’s Business Improvement Districts

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As an industry, London’s Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) are still emerging, but have undoubtedly become integral to and influential in the city. BIDs have a significant effect on – and beyond – their areas, bringing in vital investment and forging useful partnerships with the public and voluntary sectors as well as with other BIDs. In addition to their traditional ‘bins, branding and baskets’ remit, BIDS are now directly involved in regeneration, placemaking, air quality and employment initiatives.

In the context of London’s growing population and shrinking council budgets, a Department for Communities and Local Government consultation on BIDS opened the door to far more participation in council service delivery. There are challenges, of course. BIDs are not keen to become default council delivery bodies, and conversely, some councils and voters may balk at transferring control to the private sector. Further, BIDs serve their business members first, and higher business rates and additional levies could sap member willingness to renew BID mandates.

Commissioned by the GLA and LEP as London approached the Mayor’s target of 50 BIDs – a quarter of the UK total – this research assesses the impact and potential of London BIDs in a fast-changing municipal environment. The findings build on existing data and back that up with front-line experience as a basis for practical short- and longer-term recommendations.


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The Evolution of London’s Business Improvement Districts

This report assesses the impact and potential of London BIDs, building on existing data with front-line experiences and offering short- and long-term recommendations for the GLA, London boroughs and BIDs. Download the report.

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