West London set fair for “hub and spoke”

Hammersmith, Uxbridge and Ealing are among the top ten locations picked by a Knight Frank report as ideal for a satellite office in Greater London and the South East.

The study reviews the potential of a ‘hub and spoke’ response to the pandemic’s impact on office requirements. The report, “Hub and Spoke – Realistic or Idealistic?”, says new ways of working are being explored, with hybrid models incorporating flexible solutions.

The ‘hub and spoke’ idea would bring value to local centres outside London’s Central Activity Zone. It offers employees the option to work from a traditional central London “hub” or a “spoke” location nearer to home.

Hammersmith tops the list. It’s fantastic connectivity, sitting on three underground lines, half way between the City and Heathrow, and closely connected to the UK motorway network by the A4, makes it an easy pick. Uxbridge is 9th, while Ealing comes in tenth. The report says that while there is little evidence now of occupiers using such strategies there is strong interest in evaluation the possibilities, so it worked out a way of highlighting the most suitable locations.

Other changes foreseen by the report include new working solutions, collaborative hubs, with digital connections to help employees grow productivity. It suggests that if there is a shift towards the development of “spoke” offices, Hammersmith, Ealing and Uxbridge are ideally placed to provide this solution.

The ranking takes account of cost, commuter times, the strength of business links and travel times into central London as well as the local business environment and amenities. Of these other criteria, Hammersmith ranks top for market dynamics and business environment. Also ranking well for market dynamics are Heathrow/Stockley Park, and Chiswick.

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