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The shape of things to come: an update from our Placeshaping Director


This year is set to be an exciting time for the future of London Bridge's physical landscape.  The much anticipated station redevelopment is reaching completion (on course for full running capacity in June, with over 70 retail units to be fully occupied by October); the works surrounding the station have become a catalyst for many of the placeshaping projects set out in our London Bridge Plan.
Here's a guide to the evolving landscape of London Bridge in 2018.

  • St Thomas Street 


St Thomas Street has been partially closed since 2013, but is due to be handed back to Transport for London for re-opening. Team London Bridge have worked closely with TfL and our businesses to form a strategy which will help create our ‘St Thomas Street Boulevard’ vision. The road will re-open to one-way westbound 10mph traffic only, and only to authorised vehicles. You can find out more and respond to TfL here. 

Plans are also starting to take shape on future developments along the street. The owners of Capital House have done a public exhibition for this key site outside the station, and Network Rail will vacate its large temporary offices. A new Area Vision will start to emerge for how this street will look and feel like in future years – as set out in the New Southwark Plan. Our role at TLB is to ensure that partners are working together to realise the potential for: a vibrant high street and visitor destination; a focus on commercial space; excellent public realm; contemporary architecture responding to the unique placemarks and heritage; and flourishing greenery.

  • #BetterAir 


As one of the Mayor of London’s ‘Low Emission Neighbourhoods’, we will take the opportunity to instigate change through projects to create #BetterAir. One of our #BetterAir routes will link St Thomas Street and the beautiful new Kings’s courtyard and Borough High Street via the historic Inns and Yards – using greenery and planting to bring joy and tranquillity to this busy area (and understanding the impact through this new app https://tranquilpavement.com/. Other fresh air routes through the area will be decorated in stunning colourful street crossings in the autumn.
Concept drawing courtesy of United Practice Architects 
  • Low Line 

As Thameslink contractors move out of the railway arches on Holyrood Street, new spaces and arches will start to emerge. We are currently concluding some initial concept design ideas with Studio Weave/ 00 Architects and will be taking forward activities to make this part of the Low Line a distinctive and appealing destination and walking route. Look out for more activity over the summer.

  • Tooley Street 

Tooley Street will also be passed back from Network Rail to TfL in the summer. We will be working hard with our partners as this becomes two-way again, to ensure this does not come filled up with traffic, and that it supports the huge numbers coming out of the station (and we love the width of the crossing in front of Hays Galleria), as well as buses and safe cycling.

  • Cycling 

New cycle parking will be installed around the station, and we are launching a cycling strategy to set out clear actions to support an increase in cycling over the long-term, so expect some events coming up to help make cycling more appealing. You can sign up for our cycle updates here

  •  LFA 2018


All this change can be difficult to notice amidst our busy lives, which is why we'll be working with our creative partners and businesses to showcase the developments in London Bridge through an array of events celebrating the London Festival of Architecture.

If you'd like to know more about Placeshaping in London Bridge, please do get in touch. 

- Jack Skillen, Placeshaping Director.  
28 February 2018

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