The economic impact of Covid on central London and the Canary Wharf area is to be assessed by a “major” research project commissioned by Mayor Sadiq Khan.
City Hall says the viability of the capital’s commercial and cultural centres is under “immediate threat” due to home working, social distancing and the collapse in international travel, which has knock-on effects for the important tourism and hospitality sectors.
The new research will explore both the challenges and opportunities facing the two areas, with an interim report due early in the New Year.
Mr Khan said: “Hopefully at some point not too long from now, we will have defeated this virus and social distancing will come to an end.
“But the extent to which trends and shifts that were already affecting central London have been sped up or exacerbated by COVID-19, or behaviours that have come about as a result of how people have responded to the virus will persist into the future are unknown.
“But these have the potential to have a dramatic impact on issues like planning, public transport and economic development in central London and it is only right and responsible we look at these issues now, identify both the challenges and the opportunities, and start planning for our city’s future over the coming years.”