Leicester Square to receive £18.5m revamp

Tourism and film industry hub Leicester Square is the subject of ambitious refurbishment plans, which look likely to boost the appeal of renting or buying in the surrounding area.

The famous Central London square is at the hear of £18.5 million plans to revamp it, a 657ft white granite ribbon seat providing one of the centrepieces of a project that will seek to make the square a more pleasurable stopping point for the 250,000 daily visitors it receives.

The cost looks likely to be divided up between local and city-wide authorities, with the borough of Westminster coughing up £7.75 million, while the same amount will reportedly be matched by the Heart of London business alliance, leaving the Mayor of London to fund the remaining £3 million.

Housing various cinemas and hosting high profile premieres that bring in Hollywood film stars and eager crowds, it is hoped that the plans – also featuring the installation of decorative lighting and the planting of flowers and trees in surrounding streets – will further the square's resurgence.

Westminster Council leader Sir Simon Milton said "We have turned Leicester Square from a squalid and intimidating place to somewhere where there is hope for the future and people are willing to invest. When we have done all the refurbishment it will be one of London's best public spaces."

Previous plans for a sunken performance area in the centre of the square were scrapped in 2005, after opposition from the English Heritage group.

Published 11th January, 2008

© 2008 Estates IT Limited

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Tourism and film industry hub Leicester Square is the subject of ambitious refurbishment plans, which look likely to boost the appeal of renting or buying in the surrounding area.

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