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London mayor Sadiq Khan vows to 'embed culture' into city's planning system

New London mayor Sadiq Khan has claimed culture will be as important as housing, transport and the environment in his administration.

Speaking at the press opening of the new Tate Modern in the UK capital, Khan vowed to increase the number of cultural facilities and public spaces by “embedding culture in London’s planning system.”

“For too long culture has been merely a nice-to-have,” he argued. “We’ve got to change that.”

To achieve his ambitions, Khan said he would launch an infrastructure plan to increase public access to culture “in a way no world city has ever seen before.”

He pledged to introduce creative enterprise zones, subsidised artists’ studios and affordable accommodation to attract artists and creators.

“We can make sure culture is integral to the city’s development and future,” he said. “Just as we have planned for the future of transport and housing we must also plan for culture.

“It’s not just about bricks and mortar, as wonderful as our surroundings are today. It’s about realising the potential of people as well as places. To be a world city, London needs to support creative places and creative Londoners too.”

Khan praised the Tate Modern’s bold £260m (US$367m, €328m) revamp by Herzog and de Meuron – partly funded by the British government and the mayor’s office – and signalled his wish for London to develop more landmark cultural projects.

The extension to the Tate, which has added 60 per cent of exhibition space, has been billed by the museum as the UK's most important new cultural building since the British Library opened in 1973.

London mayor  Sadiq Khan  London  culture  cultural strategy  architecture  Tate Modern  design  art 
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New London mayor Sadiq Khan has claimed culture will be as important as housing, transport and the environment in his administration. Speaking at the press opening of the new Tate Modern in the UK capital, Khan vowed to increase the number of cultural facilities and public spaces by “embedding culture in London’s planning system.” “For too long culture has been merely a nice-to-have,” he argued. “We’ve got to change that.”
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London Mayor Sadiq Khan has declared culture a 'core priority' for his administration / Jonathan Brady/Press Association Images
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