Roughly four and a half miles east of the city, Bow is part of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. St Mary's church remains the centre of Bow. The bridge across the River Lee (or Lea) is a four lane flyover nowadays, with both the Lee and Blackwall Tunnel approach passing beneath. E3 offers the East End's best choice of homes, both period and new. Wedged between the City, Stratford and Docklands, it provides property for people working in those areas. Homes in Bow are scattered in pockets between businesses, not grouped neatly together in neighbourhoods. Least damaged during the Blitz, there are a wide range of properties to be found. Mile End has gained from the third-biggest lottery-funded project in the city. Many of the developments (especially Bow Quarter) have their own facilities, but Bow's main streets have a good range of shops. The gentrification of the area is well established and wine bars have been popping up on Bow Wharf, where Jongleurs have also established a comedy club. However, it is still possible to find pie and mash being served up on Roman Road during market days.
Council blocks provide a backdrop, yet there are streets of attractive two and three storey Victorian terraces, especially in the roads north of Bow Road. Tredegar Square boasts elegant Georgian brick and stucco terraces. Some of the best properties are mainly north of Bow Road, especially the Roman Road to Victoria Park stretch and new build. Houses surrounding Victoria Park and the superb new Mile End Park remain popular. Bow's splendid Georgian properties, among the numerous two and three bedroom terraced houses, have long since been rediscovered. Old housing stock is now much improved and untouched property is therefore harder to find. The substantial renovation and rebuilding of council housing is restoring whole areas. Several new and recent developments, including the 700 home Bow Quarter is an example of regeneration at its best, recently joined by conversions of church halls, factories and warehouses.
Mostly first-time buyers and city workers are investing in Bow, as well as local families. Owner-occupied is proportionately higher than in other parts of Tower Hamlets and rising in this increasingly popular, well-placed East-End heartland. Traditionally, a white, working-class area, there are now communities of Caribbean and Asian families.