London Real Estate Forum: on-demand

The London Real Estate Forum, the annual though-leadership conference took place at the Barbican Centre, 29–30 September 2021. We brought together key decision-makers from the industry, government, investment and business communities to drive sustainable investment and development in cities.

Please see the recordings from day one and day two for the Barbican Cinema 1 Stage.

Barbican Cinema 1 Stage: Day 1 

Living - homes for changing needs

In association with JLL
How were our homes of the future being built to meet changing human needs? As we faced a rising and aging population, how did the industry assure that the diversity of requirements were met to create sustainable and affordable housing aimed at students, senior living and co-living habitation..

  • Simon Hodson, JLL (Chair)
    Catherine Raynsford, The Hyde Group
    Deborah Owen-Ellis Clark, Places for People
    Tim Seddon, Retirement Villages Group
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Social value and why it is so important

In association with Trowers & Hamlins
This panel explored the ways in which city investment, planning and development drove positive social change for city residents, and what long-term strategies were needed to measure the impact and value we brought to communities.

  • Sara Bailey, Trowers & Hamlins (Chair)
    Marcus Bate, Mount Anvil
    Siobhan Jared, Transport for London
    Davinia Venton, Countryside
    Connor McDonagh, Ealing Council
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Retrofit - re-purposing and futureproofing

In association with Waterman Group
Retrofit, transformation and reuse of existing buildings was crucial to support our journey to meeting net-zero carbon targets. Alongside environmental benefits, what were the commercial and social returns of retrofit? How have we designed buildings for longevity and future re-use? What kind of investment programmes did we need to make this happen?

  • Terri Wills, Waterman (Chair)
    Rachael Owens, Buckley Gray Yeoman
    Emma Harvey, Green Finance Institute
    Richard Whitehead, Waterman Group
    Jacob Loftus, General Projects
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Building community - are we really serious?

The language of community was everywhere. But whose job was it to create and sustain the social fabric of a neighbourhood? Did developers have the appetite or ability? What were our expectations of councils? And what about the public and young people in particular: when did they finally get a voice? With the White Paper on Levelling Up out, this debate tested whether real estate can really move beyond bricks and mortar.

  • Matt Bell, Grosvenor (Chair)
    Tom Bloxham MBE, Urban Splash
    Nazeya Hussain, Kingston Council
    Azzees Minott, 2-3 Degrees
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Repurposing real estate

In association with Knight Frank
This session explored how we have repurposed buildings to make them fit for purpose - delivered mixed-use schemes that suit post-pandemic behaviours. What was the impact of new planning policies on unlocking opportunities for adaption and change-of-use? How has capital flows fed into this? What approaches have been taken to ensure our future city neighbourhoods remain dynamic, socially inclusive, and environmentally resilient?

  • Nick Parr, Knight Frank (Chair)
    Binki Taylor, The Brixton Project
    Deborah Watt, Landsec
    John McElgunn, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
    Jay Squier, Native Land
Watch now

Barbican Cinema 1 stage: Day 2

Harnessing data and technology

How did we harness big data to better understand and manage our urban environments? How has technology helped us to deliver more efficient and environmentally sustainable buildings? What role did artificial intelligence and digital twins play in shaping our future cities? We discussed how new digital infrastructure, technological innovation and smart buildings helped ensure future resilience and improve quality of life.

  • Bola Abisogun, DiverseCity Surveyors (Chair)
    Theo Blackwell, Greater London Authority
    Tomáš Jurdák, MiddleCap
    Brett Spindler, Schneider Electric
    Gavin Chandler, Sir Robert McAlpine
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Future streets and public spaces

This session explored our evolving relationship with our streets and public spaces. How have new transport innovations and a new drive to enable walkable, net zero cities impacted our approach to placemaking? What role did public spaces play in creating healthy, equitable and desirable neighbourhoods? What investments did we need to achieve this?

  • Yalena Coleman, Connected Places Catapult (Chair)
    Dr Chris Pateman-Jones, Connected Kerb
    Ruth Duston OBE, Cheapside Business Alliance
    Zoe Sellars, Waltham Forest
    Peter Heath, Atkins Ltd
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Future logistics - a pioneering sector

In association with Savills and Prologis
The logistics industry has responded and adapted rapidly during the pandemic, bringing about both challenges and opportunities. It mixed industrial and residential spaces to create industrial hubs around cities; this panel discussed how solution-based innovation, new tech and automation paved the way for a strong sector recovery.

  • Benjamin O'Connor, NLA (Chair)
    Bridget Outtrim, Savills
    Robin Woodbridge, Prologis UK
    Sarah Birt, Greater London Authority
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From knowledge to innovation - the life sciences economy

In association with JLL
We examined the UK’s role in the knowledge economy on the global stage. How did we shape our cities to promote and enable innovation? What were the major and emerging knowledge clusters across the UK and how were these clusters driving innovation? And how did real estate contribute to the companies and occupiers fuelling the innovation economy?

  • Chris Walters, JLL (Chair)
    Toby Reid, We Are Pioneer Group
    Kath Mackay, Bruntwood SciTech
    Steve Bates OBE, BioIndustry Association
    Sarah Haywood, MedCity
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Modular housing

What were the opportunities and benefits that modular housing brought to provide sustainable regeneration and development in cities? This panel examined the ways in which modern methods of construction can be used as innovative solutions to long-lasting and effective housing.

  • Katie Saunders, Trowers & Hamlins (Chair)
    Samantha Wait, Swan Housing Group
    Katherine Hegab, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
    Gareth Bradford, West Midlands Combined Authority
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Power of partnerships

What makes partnerships in the built environment durable and effective? This panel examined the opportunities and barriers presented by the pandemic for public private collaborations.

  • Sarah Cary, Meridian Water (Chair)
    Lisa Ravenscroft, Mount Anvil
    Tonia Secker, Trowers & Hamlins
    Heng Leong Cheong, Ecoworld
    Patricia Brown, Central
Watch now