President of the Royal Town Planning Institute Colin Haylock last week (3rd May) praised the far sighted investment in infrastructure in East London, following a visit to London City Airport to learn more about how planners have helped boost jobs and enterprise in the area.
Pictured (left to right): Elizabeth Hegarty from London City Airport, Colin Haylock, and Chair of London Region Julia Riddle.
RTPI President Colin Haylock said: \"The Olympics understandably grabs the headlines, but there's much more to East London than new sporting facilities. What particularly impressed me was the infrastructure that is planned and in place in East London. It already has good transport links, and with the London Overground improvements it's set to become the best connected part of London and I can see a very bright future for the area.\"
\"The airport has developed a strong corporate responsibility towards its neighbouring communities and continually strives to deliver meaningful and value-adding programmes to support local residents.\"
\"London City Airport needed visionary and positive planning to happen. It is now thriving with over 3 million passengers a year serving over 40 destinations and is one of the largest private sector employment sites in Newham. Crossrail is a hugely ambitious project involving the highest level of interdisciplinary working. Around 42km of new tunnels are planned underneath London, and as many as 15,000 people will be employed at the peak of construction.\"
With part of his family coming from East London, Colin is no stranger to the area, and added: \"East London is simply unrecognisable from the place where my mother grew up. However, we still have major challenges in building on the improvements to address the still extensive areas of deprivation.\"
Elizabeth Hegarty, Corporate Responsibility and Planning Manager, for London City Airport said: \"London City Airport is the gateway to the capital's financial, business and government districts and has been pivotal in making East London attractive to inward investment. The airport continues to be an important factor in the regeneration of the area, creating opportunities for business, as well with being a champion for local employment to ensure the economic benefits of development are shared with those living here.
The Royal Town Planning Institute is the membership body of town planners in the UK and represents over 23,000 planners.
The RTPI President's visit to City Airport and later in the day to Crossrail was organised by RTPI's London Region.