Gensler will set out its vision for the City of London in 2050 when the Developing City exhibition opens on June 21, 2012.
Gensler’s team of planners, architects and designers have outlined its predictions for London’s future evolution, combining hypotheses of the growth and shift of international trade and commerce, pioneering infrastructure, new public parks and world class transport improvements.
Predicting that London will position itself as the capital of a new global free trade zone which extends from the US to China, Gensler’s vision sees the City returning to its historic position as a diverse mercantile centre and becoming the first genuinely “Global City.”
Visions for 2050 include:
Commerce and trade
The City of 2050 has expanded beyond its historic walls embracing the post war ‘ring of opportunity’ which encompasses the vibrant fringe districts of Aldgate, Shoreditch, Barbican, Smithfield and the Upper Thames Street. Home to the prevailing technology, media and telecommunications sectors, the pharmaceutical companies, fashion, music and art - all existing alongside the lawyers and bankers. The ‘Newspapers’ have returned, as new media companies flock to Fleet Street and software developers have immersed themselves within the City’s core.
The City has become home to the world’s great exchanges, and the historic system of livery companies has also undergone a great renaissance, as world expertise clusters to deliver the full range of business and trade services.
A new mixed use, super high-rise zone on the Aldgate fringe towers over the historic eastern cluster, and sensitive refurbishment of the former meat market at Smithfield is now home to the London Life Sciences Exchange. Broadgate has finally merged with the Bishopsgate Goods Yard to create the largest concentration of tech media companies in the world, with the London Tech Media Exchange at its heart.
The City of 2050 will be a City without private transportation, where underground rail, road and servicing is fully maximised releasing valuable opportunities for the creation of new public open space above – a series of linear parks providing a new inner city greenbelt. Conservation policy has remained high on the planning agenda preserving the historic City core within an intense framework of development.
The completion of Crossrail and the upgrading of the Tube stations within the Square Mile have been supplemented by other key pieces of public transport infrastructure. A series of new airport terminals in each of the new City districts provide direct links to the remote runways located in the Thames Estuary. New Crossrail lines have been completed, linking Liverpool Street with London Bridge and Moorgate with Waterloo.
Parks and cultural spaces
As the City continues to reveal more of its history the gradual restoration of the River Fleet as a major new park running from the Thames to Hampstead has now been completed, and a continuous park connects all five regenerated districts.
The City is finally reconnected with its river, the barrier of Upper Thames Street, which dislocated the City from the River in the 1960’s, is finally removed and a third new linear park connects the River Fleet Park in the west to the restored moat of the Tower of London in the east. The traffic and utility infrastructure is placed below ground providing world class infrastructure that secures the City’s place as the business capital of the world.
A new and extended cultural district has been developed around the Barbican with the new London Wall Park providing a spectacular public face to this world class cultural cluster. The number of residents in the Barbican has increased to 30,000 with new high rise apartments integrated within this historic development.