Cities like London and Paris are surviving the pandemic – but deep issues remain

For those who are thinking of leaving London, quality of life is the number one reason, followed closely by affordability, writes Jack Brown

Tuesday 21 September 2021 12:09
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<p>‘Despite successive lockdowns keeping residents in and close to their homes, satisfaction with local areas has held steady in both London and Paris’ </p>

‘Despite successive lockdowns keeping residents in and close to their homes, satisfaction with local areas has held steady in both London and Paris’

It’s been a tough time for central London, but signs of life are beginning to re-emerge. This week, city centre footfall, sales in Pret a Manger and Transport for London ridership all saw increases. This is surely encouraging news.

Images of ghost town-like, tumbleweed-ravaged city centres have been a very visible sign of the pandemic’s effects on urban life. With office workers no longer making their daily commutes, and hospitality, live entertainment and tourism placed on ice during successive lockdowns, city centres have been eerily quiet.

It is not just the city centre. It has been a tough time for cities in general. With proximity to others an essential part of urban life, and remote working increasing during the pandemic, we have seen a wave of commentary on individuals leaving the city for a more comfortable, affordable rural or suburban life.

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