Stratford and North Newham
Stratford in East London has been the focus of major regeneration for some years. Dramatically improved transport links have created a major intersection for both rail (DRL) and Underground (the Jubilee Line) networks, as well as an important intersection for the Channel Tunnel link. Stratford's centre has also been transformed into a bright new shopping and entertainment centre specifically designed to attract young professionals. Sited as the main base for the 2012 Olympics, further development projects are lining up, e.g. a multi-million pound scheme to regenerate a brown field site to the north of the town centre providing all the amenities required for a whole new community.
Away from the commercial buildings and tower blocks that dominate the area around the railway station, attractive streets of small Victorian terraces predominate. Here, good value for money is still possible, although prices continue to rise since the arrival of the Jubilee Line, which gives quick and easy access to the city centre. Pockets of grander Victorian houses can be found, e.g. along the Romford Road, though many are converted into apartments. There are lots of smart new purpose-built flats rising up, as well as ex-council homes, attracting bargain hunters, city commuters and young couples. Traditionally a working class neighbourhood, North Newham still has a smattering of small Victorian villas and post-war terraces. Many of its council-flat tower blocks have been demolished but some still remain to blot the landscape. The 1970's and 1980's brought private new-build, low-rise housing, as well as council built estates, and the area today is home to a high proportion of young people. It is one of the most diverse places in London, with large communities from the Indian subcontinent and elsewhere. Forest Gate, close to Epping Forest, is one of Newham's star areas, boasting large and small Victorian and Edwardian villas in leafy streets as well as 4 and 5 bed modern houses, neat town houses and luxury conversions. Plaistow, in contrast, is dominated by streets of small period terraced houses, with a scattering of new build flats, ex-council and council homes. Recently the 20th century houses on the New City Estate have become very popular.
A place for young commuters and their families - home buyers forced out of areas nearer to the centre of London and the Docklands. Improved transport links and regeneration, it is fast becoming a popular place to live.