The mayor of London Boris Johnson has launched a £50M fund to boost regeneration and rejuvenate town centres in the capital.
The fund will support the establishment of local businesses districts, and the improvement of retail, leisure, culture and arts provision.
It aims to stimulate economic growth in London’s vital network of outer London town centres, and will specifically target those boroughs which benefit less directly from the 2012 Games and Crossrail.
Those boroughs that qualify will be able to bid for a slice of the fund to enable regeneration schemes at a tipping point to go ahead and could be the difference between the success and failure of a project.
The Mayor unveiled the fund, as part of the economic development settlement from Government, during a visit to Bromley.
Johnson will now work with the Outer London Commission, an independent body, to advise his team on how to get the best out of money available through this new fund. It will advise on how the bidding process will work including criteria for potential bidders.
He said: “This fund is a vital shot in the arm for our town centres and just the help needed to get new projects off the ground that wouldn’t otherwise happen. I am delighted that after months of hard negotiations we have secured a significant pot of money to help projects really motor and we now have the means to nurture developments, increase work and leisure opportunities and make futures bright. It is vital we address the historic neglect of the outer boroughs that preceded this mayoralty and this is one of the ways we can start delivering growth.”
“What we know through the work we have already done with the Outer London Commission, is that one of the greatest economic assets provided by the outer boroughs is the quality of life afforded to residents. We are talking about the places people call home - the communities they care about, the commercial centres where they shop, where their kids play where they meet friends or spend time with families. These places are the very beating heart of communities and also offer great economic wealth that needs to be fully tapped into.”