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Notes from MIPIM: ‘The future begins tomorrow’

An AECOM breakfast this morning. Steve Norris, chairman of Soho Estates, arrived just in time chair as his blackberry was still on English time.

Good report on London 2065 by AECOM, particularly making the point about the need to plan across the South East. (They’re working with us on our Global Cities Business Alliance – where we’re bringing together business leaders from across the world – which is helpful.)

Some stats that hit home:

  • 20 million people live in the South East. We are already a mega city, with many of those commuting into central London.
  • To satisfy housing requirements we would need to build three garden cities a year.

There were also worries about the consequences of climate change on London in this time frame. Will our financial district and the Thames Gateway be under water?

Robert Evans, executive director and partner at Argent, in good form as my neighbour – speculating on AECOM’s suggestion that Brent Cross needs to become a mega node since they’ve got projects there. As an aside we had a chat about “dashboards”, “KPIs” and the like. He has a new alternative to “smart” objectives: “DUMB” – meaning dubious, unmeasurable, manufactured and biased!

Steve concluded with the words “the future begins tomorrow”.

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