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The developers that are building communities

When it comes to new developments, creating a sense of community can be just as important as the building itself

Embassy Gardens New Union Square in Nine Elms

What attracts a buyer or tenant to a new development? A high-spec home or a dynamic, established neighbourhood?

It’s an important question for developers in London, as a large percentage of the new prime homes coming to the market in the next few years are clustered around areas such as Nine Elms, Victoria and Canary Wharf – places that are better known as transport hubs or office locations rather than residential communities.

“People need to feel happy where they live, especially if the development might not be completely finished,” says Ed Lewis, Head of London Residential Development Sales. “Developers understand this and work hard to create a sense of place in these locations.

“Being more flexible on leasing terms, for example, has helped independent shops, bars, restaurants and services get up and running quickly and create an interesting street-level environment,” he adds. “Others are organising events that help bring residents together, such as yoga classes, chess clubs and book clubs.”

And it doesn’t stop there. Over the summer, a weekly food market will set up stall at Embassy Gardens’ New Union Square in Nine Elms, creating a vibrant community space.

One of the area’s most sociable spots promises to be Linear Park (above), a kilometre-long green space running from Vauxhall to Battersea. “The park not only links the new schemes, but the communal gardens, ponds, public spaces and views over the river will attract pedestrians and cyclists alike,” says Lewis.

Placemaking on this scale is a significant investment, but it adds value in the long term and helps create a bond with the wider community.

For more information about new homes in London, please contact Ed Lewis


Dubai’s most exclusive communities

Dubai’s blossoming suburbs

Residents in search of communities with good schools and easy commutes are heading out into Dubai’s rapidly maturing suburbs. Alongside the development of new malls, leisure amenities and infrastructure, these offer a variety of property styles, appealing to families and professionals alike. Three stand out.

Dubailand now has a broad selection of villas ranging from established communities to new developments. The area is also close to two of Dubai’s finest schools.

Jumeirah Village Circle offers a plentiful range of apartments and townhouses, and fast commutes to Dubai Marina and Media City.

Dubai Silicon Oasis is a strategically masterplanned development of apartments around an established villa community, designed for the growing number of people employed at Dubai International Airport.

Lucy Bush, Head of Residential Sales and Leasing, Savills Dubai