Creative Lanes - a Town Centre Vision Study for Muswell Hill, North London
Town Centre Visioning Study to explore the potential for creating new employment space for local small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs), independents and creative industries in Muswell Hill, North London.
A relatively well-defined urban village in North London, greater demand for new housing has significantly reduced the availability of work, meeting and preparation space for a vibrant community of producers, artists, jewellers, dressmakers, carpenters, bakers, potters, independents and designers.
Reflecting a situation that is occurring around many urban centres where residential and employment accommodation is at a premium, smaller local businesses are faced with two options in their search for affordable work and business space – finding creative solutions in home offices, studios and workshops or relocating further afield.
If left unchecked, such a trend will lead to a creative and entrepreneurial void in heart of towns and cities while at the same time, gradually eradicating the sustainability of such communities.
Responding to the question – ‘in order to foster sustainable communities, how can we deliver affordable work and business accommodation for SMEs in central locations where space is already limited?’ – the study began as a private initiative by the practice and has subsequently gained support from local trader and resident associations, community groups and private residents and businesses.
In 2016, presentations were made to local councillors and the local authority for consideration and the initiative has been featured in the local newspaper and in online professional journals.