Sustainability Report 2010
open/close tab
The Development of Westfield London

Case Study

The Development of Westfield London

Shepherd’s Bush Library at Westfield London, UKShepherd’s Bush Library at Westfield London, UK

Urban Regeneration 

In 2008, Westfield opened its second major development in the United Kingdom at Westfield London. One of the most significant retail developments in the country, at a cost of £1.7 billion, the centre created 150,000m2 of retail over three floors along with restaurants, cafes, bars and leisure facilities totalling 172,000m2. Along the way it made a considerable impact on the local community through major investment and large - scale urban regeneration. 

Situated just three miles west of London’s Marble Arch, the development of Westfield London transformed a derelict 43-acre former railway yard in Shepherd’s Bush into a genuine community hub which today attracts well over 26 million visits each year. 

Early in the scheme’s development Westfield undertook public consultation that included many community organisations representing general and specialised community interests. It also adopted a partnership approach with the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham in an effort to maximise the scheme’s benefits. The Group also entered into development agreements with the city’s transport authorities to deliver major new assets and upgrades to the surrounding transport infrastructure. 

The outcome has been a world class retail and leisure site that has transformed the local environment by providing West London with a new community hub that integrates efficiently with its surrounds and provides the trade area with retail, leisure, and community facilities and services. 

Westfield London is also seen as a catalyst for further development and regeneration in the wider White City Opportunity Area with planning for future investment in homes and employment, as well as construction by other landowners nearby already underway. The Group itself is also planning major investment with the extension of Westfield London with a mixed-use scheme.

In its development agreements with Transport for London and London Underground, Westfield committed £170 million in transport infrastructure investment to maximise the centre’s accessibility and to accommodate the increased demand for transport to the area.

The investment included extensive improvements to the public transport system: a major redevelopment of the existing underground station at Shepherd’s Bush; a new overland railway station on the West London Line; a new tube station on the Hammersmith & City Line at Wood Lane and two new bus and transport interchanges straddling the centre at either end — all serving the centre as well as the wider regeneration area.

Infrastructure changes to the area have provided the community with eight separate ways to access the centre and while parking facilities are available, research shows that around 80% of visitors to Westfield London use public transport, walk or cycle. 

In consultation with local authorities and through subsequent development agreements, the Group committed to a number of contributions to the local community. A new library was constructed with facilities for IT and training and, since opening in late 2009, the £2 million flagship Shepherd’s Bush Library is already regarded as one of the United Kingdom’s most innovative public libraries. 

Other community investments included the provision of childcare services for employees; public art; landscaping and streetscaping at a number of locations surrounding the centre, including a £6m investment in the re-landscaping of nearby Shepherd’s Bush Green and surrounds; a nature reserve; and the appointment of a town centre manager to liaise between the community and the various projects undertaken. Since opening Westfield has also contributed £3 million to a security program that provides around - the - clock police ‘beat’ patrols both onsite and in the local area surrounding the centre. 

Westfield provided discounted land to the local community, which made available affordable and new housing schemes that were developed in conjunction with joint venture partners. 

The development of Westfield London stimulated the local economy through job creation. During the project’s construction more than 10,000 jobs were created and more than 8,000 full-time and part-time jobs on completion. More than 2,000 local residents have undergone pre-employment training through the White City Employment Group which was set up and funded by Westfield with the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham.

Now based onsite at Westfield London in the new Shepherd’s Bush Library, the employment initiative has been renamed the Work Zone and has recently been accredited as a National Skills Academy. The Work Zone continues to work with the local council and their associated agencies to develop training and providing long-term careers for local people.

In addition to Westfield London’s significant economic impact on its local environment the development also incorporated key sustainable design elements such as use of recycled materials; waste management initiatives; centralised energy/cooling supply and distribution and efficiency in water use and energy use — the latter achieved primarily through the installation of a unique glazed roof design that provides natural lighting and controls heat build-up from solar gain.