Find answers to our most frequently asked questions below. If your question is not covered below, please email VisionforSoho@kandaconsulting.co.uk
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The Vision for Soho aims to develop a vision statement, set of objectives, and a holistic set of projects (mostly focused upon the public realm) that will address current and emerging pressures facing Soho, to ensure Soho’s future is equal to its incredible past. To do this, we are working with Soho’s communities, listening to aspirations, concerns, and ideas, and building off the wealth of past work that has been produced for Soho.
The Vision for Soho is led by Westminster City council (WCC) Place Shaping team, who comprise Architects, Landscape Architects, Urban Designers, Masterplanners, Town Planners and Placemakers.
The Place Shaping team began work on the Vision for Soho in 2019, prior to a pause in the project due to Covid-19, and will be the design lead, as well as responsible for the management of the project. They are supported by Kanda, who will be leading on community engagement, and Norman Rourke Pryme (NRP) who will advise on transport and movement solutions.
This is an opportunity for you to have a say in the future of Soho, helping to shape how it functions, and ensuring its future is as incredible as its past.
As Soho continues to evolve with new trends, economies, and experiences, with planned London wide projects such as the Elizabeth Line and the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) changing the way we move, and with the devastating impacts of COVID-19, we need to ensure the changes that will occur in Soho’s future enhance, rather than compromise, its incredible spirit.
With many different people loving Soho for many different reasons your aspirations, ideas and concerns are what will make the Vision for Soho a vital plan to enhance the spirit of Soho in the future.
The Soho Neighbourhood Plan was produced by the Soho Neighbourhood Forum. It is a statutory policy document that forms part of the development plan for Soho. It has been created to ensure Soho’s communities have a say in the policies and statutory process that will affect the future of Soho.
The Vision for Soho is not a statutory document, and as such can be more dynamic and can easily evolve with the neighbourhood, and the aspirations of Soho’s communities. Largely focused on Soho’s public realm, it will build upon the Soho Neighbourhood Plan, and the wishes of Soho’s communities, to take aspiration forward and deliver upon it.
For more information about the Soho Neighbourhood Plan, please visit https://planforsoho.org/
The Vision for Soho will sit alongside the Soho Neighbourhood Plan and together will provide a comprehensive plan for Soho’s future, with both bodies of work being developed by Soho’s communities, for Soho’s communities. The Neighbourhood Plan will act as the community’s statutory voice, while the Vision for Soho will be the community’s proactive voice of action that will help guide Council’s approach and future investment in the neighbourhood.
Moreover, the Vision for Soho, as well as the Soho Neighbourhood Plan must be read and considered alongside all existing WCC policies, strategies, and commitments. These plans do not remove the need for Planning or Licensing permissions in Soho.
No. The temporary al-fresco schemes that was developed in 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic to allow Soho businesses to trade in accordance with government restrictions came to an end on 30 September 2021. We can consider what worked, and what didn’t work, and if requested by Soho’s communities, we can consider options towards a more sustainable outdoor dining experience in Soho, that balances other uses and pressures.
To develop the Vision for Soho, we are engaging extensively with the local community to understand aspirations for Soho and where opportunities exist to improve the area, building upon existing studies and research including the Soho Neighbourhood Plan.
The first and second phase of engagement has already been completed and included a series of meetings with local stakeholders, in-person and virtual workshops, pop-ups in Berwick Street Market, and online surveys.
You can find all materials, and copies of the consultation reports produced for each phase here.
Phase three of the Vision for Soho will commence on 9th November and run until 28th November. The outcomes of the third phase of engagement will be presented back to the community shortly and a consultation will follow in 2022.
All past studies and plans are being reviewed and being considered for inclusion into the Vision for Soho. This includes public realm studies, traffic studies, and previous plans that were produced. While we accept that aspects of some of this work may be out of date, we are confident that most of this work will still have value. Any work that we feel could address existing aspirations or issues within Soho will be presented to Soho’s communities for consideration for inclusion within the Vision for Soho.
Everyone who is a resident, worker, visitor or has an interest in Soho can have their say and provide feedback. To get involved please monitor our website visionforsoho.co.uk or email the project team at firstname.lastname@example.org
We have undertaken an extensive consultation process, with the first phase of consultation taking place during July and August 2021. The consultation took place as a series of meetings with key local stakeholders, a series of in-person and virtual workshops, and pop-ups in Berwick Street Market over a four-week period. The consultation was promoted via the council’s existing networks and further activities from the first phase included:
Promotion for the second round of consultation included:
We are aware that a number of flyers did not arrive, and we are looking into this with our distribution partners. If you would like to have your say on our plans or get in touch with the project team, please email email@example.com. We will also (where possible) leave flyers in key locations around soho for people to pick up and find out more.
This website is the best place to stay up to date with the latest developments for the Vision for Soho. We will also send flyers in the post to ensure those without the internet are kept up to date with upcoming events also.