WPA 10-point plan for recovery

16 Nov 2020

Based on research findings and analysis in “The Future of Westminster Post Covid-19: Planning for Recovery”, the WPA has outlined a ten-point plan for local and national government to support the recovery in Westminster and UK city centres:

  1. Activation of the streetscape through the creation of more open spaces for pedestrians and a reduction of traffic, alongside measures to attract innovative pop-up retail and leisure uses.
  2. Comprehensive support for active travel in city centres, including dedicated infrastructure and e-bike and cycle incentive schemes.
  3. Business support at local and national level targeted at businesses and sectors which need the most help, including extension to the business rates holiday in 2021.
  4. High street reforms including an extension to traditional trading hours (including Sunday trading) and a fairer business rates system taxing online sales.
  5. Greater support for sustainable office development to help drive revival of commercial centres, with 18 jobs in retail, leisure and hospitality sustained by every 100 office workers.
  6. Focus on attracting visitors to commercial centres. Visitor numbers should be fundamental to city planning and vision documents, alongside a reversal of plans to end tax free shopping for tourists.
  7. A clear route map to the resumption of international travel to support the return of tourism in London and other UK cities and regions.
  8. Infrastructure investment to boost digital and transport connectivity within cities and across all parts of the UK.
  9. Financial flexibility and freedoms enabling cities to innovate and invest in their areas, particularly the leading commercial centres which need to drive recovery and create jobs.
  10. An alliance of cities across the UK to end regional hostility and the undermining of national unity. No city has been immune to the pandemic. Now is the time to work together.