Mayor Unveils Outer London Boroughs Report

Economic prosperity and key decision making for years to come

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The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, today launched the pre-publication report of the findings of the Outer London Commission.  The document is the most comprehensive account to date of what is happening in the Outer London Boroughs, which include Brent, Ealing, Hounslow, Kingston and Merton, in terms of economic prosperity and will inform key decision making for years to come.

While outer London provides two fifths of the capital’s jobs, these have been growing at little more than half the rate of those in inner London.  Historically, City Hall policy was perceived to have focused largely on central London at the expense of the outer London boroughs.

To address these concerns effectively the Mayor set up the Outer London Commission to identify untapped potential in the outer boroughs, all with a key role to play in the economic success of London as a whole. The Commission went on to identify what it feels are the factors currently limiting the prosperity of certain areas, and recommended policies and proposals for future development.

To understand how higher growth might be encouraged, the Commission looked at ways in which different parts of the existing economy might perform more effectively, as well as exploring potential sources of new growth in the green and creative industries and improvements to the transport system. 

The Commission concluded that outer London’s potential to contribute to the wider economy cannot be measured simply in terms of the number of jobs. In fact, one of the greatest economic assets provided by outer London boroughs is the quality of life of its residents, including new housing. 

This is a vital document which builds on the on-going work by the Mayor in outer London boroughs such as increasing policing at transport hubs, planting new trees, improving parks, re-opening and extending the East London Line and lobbying for projects such as Crossrail.

Boris Johnson said:
‘During these challenging economic times, it is vitally important to do everything we possibly can to ensure that everyone gets a chance to contribute to and benefit from the economic strength and diversity of the capital.   Tapping into and investing in the economy of Outer London boroughs is absolutely key to achieving this. 

‘This report provides detailed research and analysis on the outer London economy as well as essential background for understanding the challenges and opportunities it faces.  My vision is for a capital city which is integrated, dynamic and forward thinking where Outer London boroughs work hand in hand with Inner London to achieve a strong and vibrant economy.’

William McKee, Chair of the Outer London Commission, said, ‘The Commission not only carried out a thorough analysis of trends in the outer London economy, it also engaged directly with many of the key stakeholders in it. It tested established structures to investigate whether they had further potential for growth and it looked at some radical, indeed contentious, possible alternative sources of growth. While it rejected most of this last group, this was a useful learning process, helping the Commission to put forward realistic proposals. I am glad to see that so many of them have been included in the Mayor's Draft Replacement London Plan and will be subject to an Examination in Public this summer’.

May 25, 2010