A new report into East London’s digital and creative industries has identified the potential of empty property to create new, shared workspaces.
The Old Street area has been at the centre of a growing cluster of small businesses since the mid 90s. As they have become more successful, and as more have been attracted to the area, demand for workspace has increased and rents are rising. As has been seen elsewhere, the success of something started by small, creative businesses threatens to force them out of the area.
Access to cheap workspace is critical for start-ups and early stage firms – in particular, well-curated shared workspace can provide a supportive community. The accelerated serendipity of shared space mirrors the wider benefits of the cluster itself.
We recommend: Local and central government explore the potential for converting empty buildings that they own in East London into workspaces, tendering management to professional shared space providers
Both reports look at specifics, with A Tale of Tech City focusing on a small area of London while Pop Up People explores temporary reuse of spaces. But put together, it seems that the common ground is that buildings in our town and city centres need to change, and that creative industries are at the heart of this.