Letter to the Evening Standard from Policy Chairman Mark Boleat on office-to-residential conversions

Mark Boleat responds to an article by Joseph Watts in the Evening Standard's Thursday 9 October edition:

"It is good to see the issue of office-to-residential conversion being taken seriously. It is true London needs more housing space - but taking this space from job-generating offices is not the solution. With a recovery under way, the need for office space is growing, not falling – and the Square Mile now has the lowest vacancy rates since 2007, despite having the highest ever stock levels. Research this week showed it is not empty offices that are being converted, but those housing small businesses. How are we to support economic growth if we pull the rug out from under fledgling businesses – the very ones that employ most staff? London’s strength as a global business centre needs protecting."

Mark Boleat, Policy Chairman, City of London Corporation, EC2V 7HH