London’s Thames Estuary earmarked as creative hub by mayorSadiq Khan
London, Feb 14: A bold vision to transform London’s Thames Estuary into a hub for the creative and cultural industries was unveiled by Mayor Sadiq Khan.
The mayor on Monday said the project would bring thousands of jobs and growth to benefit the capital and the wider south east corner of England, Xinhua news agency reported.
The proposal spans seven London boroughs as well as the counties of Essex and Kent, and is expected to generate $44 billion a year to London’s economy.
Khan’s plan would see the Thames Estuary transformed into a global centre of excellence for the creative industries, with several large-scale developments proposed.
He called on ministers to put the creative industries at the heart of their industrial strategy.
A spokesman for the mayor said: “The creative industries are Britain’s biggest growth sector, with 1.3 million people working in the creative economy across London and South East.”
Khan’s plan outlines a future where the Thames Estuary becomes an internationally-renowned centre for major creative production facilities for building, innovating and testing new ideas — supporting growth, championing a low carbon economy, providing job opportunities and investing in a skilled workforce.
The vision document, which has been submitted to the Lord Heseltine, head of the Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission, identifies the potential for several large-scale national hubs which add up to one of the largest investments in industrial infrastructure since Canary Wharf was built in the 1980s.
The proposals include London’s largest film studio complex in Dagenham, a national theatre-making studios complex in Bexley, a state-of-the-art facility and foundry for manufacturing large-scale artworks and sculptures, including Britain’s biggest 3D printing centre.
It will also see a new national centre for experiential arts in Woolwich and studios in Purfleet that will be Britain’s leading independent media production facility.
Khan said: “London leads the way across the whole of the creative economy, from fashion to film, design to gaming, performing arts to the visual arts.”
“It’s only right that we build on this success and transform the Thames Estuary into a world-class centre for creative production, leading global innovation, developing the talent of the future and cultivating world-changing ideas,” he said.