Following the launch of Landsec’s Shaping Successful Future Cities  report earlier this year, Mike Hood, CEO of Landsec’s regeneration business and Jennie Colville, Head of ESG and Sustainability, sit down with Property Week to discuss the findings – and where we go from here.

Billions of people inhabit cities today – more than half our global population in fact. The success of our urban spaces is therefore absolutely integral to our collective prosperity, health, vitality and success.

Many of our cities, however, are not currently living up to their full potential – or, in some cases, face decline. There is work for us to do if we are to keep our urban spaces thriving well into the future.

With a number of stakeholders involved - from national government to local government to businesses to everyday citizens – the task is not straightforward. Now is the time for us to come together to forge the best path.

To help guide this work and as part of Landsec’s Shaping Successful Future Cities  report, the Six Principles of Urbanisation have been developed. These, put simply, are areas of opportunity, designed to bring us to successful cities of the future. Ranked in order of importance, these are:

  • Climate prepared – meaning to protect citizens and ensure the built environment is green, efficient and a generator of crucial resources
  • Resilience – referring to the ability to cope with change and external shocks – well-networked, diversified and not solely reliant on international supply chain
  • Desirable – providing a high quality of life
  • Responsive - using the best of technology, to the advantage of all inhabitants
  • Equitable – to promote diversity and ensure fair and equal access to services
  • Polycentric – to challenge the traditional city structure with ‘one centre’ – and instead promote a multi-nodal model, with a network of smaller decentralised hubs, which harness local identity and autonomy

In our video, Mike and Jennie explain how a coordinated and proactive plan of action, based around the Six Principles outlined, could lead us to highly favourable outcomes. These Principles recognise that a city needs to be more than liveable: it needs to be a place where people actively want to be.

By rethinking the city along these lines, we can create urban places that are conducive to long-term vitality and wellbeing.