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London Mayor launches £1m fund to help businesses clean up pollution hotspots

Mark Moran
28 November 2017
 

The Mayor of London has launched a £1m fund for employers to implement green initiatives. The fund is designed to help to implement hard-hitting measures to tackle toxic air and to reduce filthy emissions from dirty vehicles.

Five ‘Business Low Emissions Neighbourhoods’ were selected from a total of 15 bids, showing the wide-ranging support for improving air quality among London’s business community.

The Business Low Emissions Neighbourhoods will provide measures such as anti-idling campaigns, zero-emission delivery services and cleaner walking routes for staff and customers. The neighbourhoods will be delivered by local business groups working in partnership with their local councils, which have supported the development of the proposals.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, said: “London’s toxic air is a public health crisis and I’m delighted to be working with businesses across the capital to help rid the city of these pollution hotspots. As a pro-business Mayor I am pleased to be working with businesses to clean up our air.

“Targeted local initiatives, such as Low Emission Neighbourhoods, are a great weapon in the fight against air pollution and this action we are taking is vital for safeguarding London’s health. But I cannot tackle this crisis alone. It is sickening that government is yet to match my ambition; we urgently need them to step up and face their responsibilities by delivering a national vehicle scrappage fund and a 21st Century Clean Air Act that is fit for purpose.”

The successful Business Low Emissions Neighbourhoods span five different boroughs:

  • Southwark: The Better Bankside and Team London Bridge Business Improvement Districts will deliver a project around Borough High Street enhancing and promoting routes to reduce emissions on the main roads. Interventions will include a clean walking route from London Bridge Station to Guys Hospital, consolidating parcel deliveries so that they are sent into one location and distributed via a low or zero-emission vehicle to reduce congestion and pollution, a green cycle path, and anti-idling campaigns.
  • Hammersmith and Fulham: Hammersmith Business Improvement District will deliver a project around the Hammersmith Flyover working closely with local organisations such as the Lyric Theatre, which have offered free space for events and workshops. The project includes a secure hub for people to store their bikes, and a host of greening and other improvements such as a green wall to help transform some of the grey car-dominated parts of this busy destination.
  • Islington: The Archway Town Centre Group will deliver a variety of interventions to support local businesses in going green and improving the area for walking and cycling, including a shared electric vehicle for deliveries, a green walking route, and the removal of parking spaces outside the children’s centre to be replaced by new planting and trees. It is also exploring the possibility of installing lockers for deliveries at, or close to, Archway station, to help residents avoid missed deliveries and provide an alternative to getting their online shopping delivered to work, which often results in extra traffic pollution and congestion in central London.
  • Camden: Euston Business Improvement District will provide an attractive cleaner walking route from Euston to Regents Park, helping people avoid some of the most polluted roads in London.
  • Westminster: Northbank Business Improvement District is a project around Aldwych and the Strand that will reduce pollution and make this busy area – home to a host of important destinations and attractions – more inviting for walking and cycling. As part of the project, consultants will work with all the local businesses and organisations to help them cut the number of unnecessary deliveries. Other interventions include: a range of street improvements such as parks and innovative lighting; a project with St Clement Danes School to improve walking routes to school; cleaner and more inviting walking and cycling routes; and an eco-kiosk co-designed with the local community, which will provide information about local attractions as well as air quality and other environmental information.

Approximately £100,000 in remaining funding will support some elements of a Low Emission Neighbourhood around Homerton Hospital. This will provide walking and cycling routes and facilities for the 1.5m patients and 4,000 staff each year. It will also provide electric vehicle chargepoints hat will be used by the hospital and the public.

Ruth Duston, chief executive of Northbank BID, said: “The Northbank LEN area is a huge generator of visitors to the central London for the best quality and variety of cultural and retail attractions with world wide reputations for innovation, creativity and regeneration.

“We look forward to working with local businesses and the community to improve air quality and enable behaviour change in a variety of exciting projects to make this part of central London healthier for all.”

h Business Low Emission Neighbourhoods, funded by the London Economic Action Partnership (LEAP), build on Khan’s Borough Low Emission Neighbourhoods, currently being delivered in five locations across eight boroughs and which feature measures to reduce emissions and visibly transform areas to support walking and cycling.

Natalie Campbell, LEAP board member, said: “LEAP is delighted to support London’s businesses and organisations deliver such a great range of innovative and impactful Low Emission Neighbourhoods. These LENs will help to protect staff, customers, and visitors to some of our busiest and polluted areas, as well as helping to increase the attractiveness of these areas and attract additional investment.”

 
 
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