11 Mar 2020


A major new piece of research states that Central London has the potential to deliver an extra 400,000 jobs, 43,000 homes and £100bn in economic growth by 2041 if civic, business leaders and government adopt a 10-point plan for inclusive and sustainable growth.

The study, commissioned by the London Property Alliance and launched at an event comprising senior members from London Government, sets out the growth potential of the central areas of London, defined as the Central Activities Zone Plus (CAZ+).

It warns that central London’s economy may falter unless a ‘good growth’ scenario is achieved, maximising the area’s potential with the support of local communities.

Ahead of today’s budget, property industry leaders have also called on the Government to recognise Central London’s role as a powerhouse for the national economy.

Charles Begley, Executive Director of London Property Alliance, the membership body and advocacy group for central London real estate, said: “By enabling central London to deliver on its ‘good growth’ potential, we can create opportunities and prosperity for both capital and the wider United Kingdom.

“We fully support levelling up, and London’s success, particularly its commercial heart, which contributes significantly to the national economy, cannot be taken for granted. The public and private sectors must work together to deliver the benefits which new investment and development can bring.”

Professor Tony Travers, Director of LSE London, who contributed to the research and authored its foreword added: Good growth can provide the resources to deliver better streets and services. Standing still, or worse decline, is not an option for any part of this critically important area if it is to deliver the homes and jobs required for the future. Choices face the central boroughs and the Mayor. How they respond will determine the future success of London and, indeed, the rest of the country.”

`Good Growth in London’s Central Activities Zone – 2020-2041’, authored by leading built environment consultancy Arup, provides a snapshot of the performance of the CAZ+, which currently supports 1.9 million jobs (31% of all jobs in London); £211 bn in economic activity (10% of the UK’s output); and generates £4.6 bn in business rates – 19% of the total for England.

Some of the key recommendations in the report include the following:

  • Making the case for further devolved fiscal powers for London Government
  • Ensuring that the policy environment embraces good growth across the CAZ+ and seeks to make the best use of the new transport capacity that is planned for Central London
  • Creating an understanding of the need for good growth across the CAZ+ in the context of the economic performance of the UK’s other major cities
  • Improving collaboration between a range of CAZ+ stakeholders, including the GLA, Boroughs, business improvement districts (BIDs), investors, the construction industry and neighbourhood forums, to respond quickly to emerging disruptive factors
  • Strengthening the enforcement and management of construction sites, utility activities, road works and anti-social behaviour to mitigate the negative impacts of built environment activities on local neighbourhoods.


Whilst many of the recommendations can be achieved through more effective working between the boroughs and City Hall, the key ask of the Chancellor as he prepares to deliver his budget is for greater fiscal devolution to London and other core cities.

Alexander Jan, Chief Economist, Arup said: “We were commissioned by the Alliance to explore how implementation of bolder policies both locally and by Whitehall to support ‘Good Growth’ could deliver for those who work and live in the CAZ+ area. 

The area’s success is of vital importance to the national economy and London as a whole. Retaining more of the proceeds of growth for local services and investment, flexible planning policies and closer working amongst central London’s authorities, business improvement districts, residents and other stakeholders are key to its success.”

The outcomes from the research launch, along with the recommendations provided by Arup, will now form the basis of a series of asks of central, London and local government – as well as relevant parties and stakeholders – in seeking to ensure that the CAZ+ can deliver on its good growth obligations, from housing delivery to office space and jobs.

The research is supported by Almacantar, Derwent London, Great Portland Estates, Grosvenor, Landsec and New West End Company.


Read Property Week’s coverage (£) of the report here