Shaping Wood Green

In partnership with the community, we’ve created a vision for the future of Wood Green called ‘Shaping Wood Green’ that covers the short, medium and long term. It is underpinned by a series of six themes for improvement, and five placemaking areas of transformation.  

It sets out the Wood Green that the Council is committed to creating, in collaboration with local people and with help from our partners in the years ahead. 

This is rooted in what residents, businesses and visitors have recently told us though Wood Green Voices and supported by the Council’s own evidence and ambitions. This is our vision for what Wood Green could become.  

We will work hard to make things happen and continue to build on the collaboration that’s begun. 

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Shaping Wood Green – the detail! 

Six themes for change 

We’ve listened to what you told us and have created six themes that reflect a shared idea of how to steer the changes that we can make: 

1. Making Wood Green a welcoming place 

Lots of things go into making a place welcoming, and it starts with being clean and safe. So many people across our community work hard to improve how their street, neighbourhood or local park feels, yet we know that too many people feel unsafe or unwelcome as they move around Wood Green – especially young people, and especially after dark. We also know that the litter and waste made by some makes it hard for everyone else to fully enjoy their surroundings or take pride in where they live.   The new Roj Cafe  on Ducketts Common

We want a Wood Green where people of all ages can enjoy spending time in their neighbourhood and where the public spaces people see around them are clean and well maintained.  

We’ve heard clearly that people want to feel safe from the threat of violence and anti-social behaviour, and safe to walk or cycle along our streets.  

The result should be a Wood Green that works for all its residents, that promotes more positive connections and cohesion between neighbours, and which lays the foundations for everything else we want to achieve.  

2. Culture at the heart of Wood Green 

We want Wood Green to be a place where culture and creativity are woven into its fabric, enriching our residents’ lives and attracting visitors from other boroughs. Our residents say that they want to see more events and venues where they can enjoy music, performance and celebrate our diverse heritage and multicultural identity.  International ceramicist Petr Weigl at work in his studio in Wood  Green‘s Cultural Quarter

By protecting and promoting affordable workspace, we will help our creative industries grow, and make them a more visible part of Wood Green life by drawing activity from the Cultural Quarter into the town centre. 

In partnership with the area’s creative organisations and community groups, we will deliver locally rooted cultural events and make Wood Green a great place to experience culture. 

Open air performance, markets, and street food will breathe new life into our public spaces during the day and into the evening. 

3. Putting the green in Wood Green 

Residents love our parks and green spaces but would like them to be improved – and for Wood Green’s streets to be greener.  

We will introduce more trees, biodiversity, and sustainable drainage features into the public realm to green our streets and improve air quality. This will also support wildlife and help us adapt to the impacts of climate change such as flooding and overheating. 

We will also get more out of our existing parks and green spaces for people and for the environment, making them into places that all residents can enjoy, to exercise and play sport, to relax and unwind, to meet friends or to enjoy nature.  

4. Living well 

Wood Green residents already have many services and facilities nearby. We want to improve the quality, mix and accessibility to give more of our residents the support they need for a good life, day-to-day, here on their doorstep.  Young students attending a music workshop at the Alevi Cultural  Centre in Wood Green.

That means joined-up, easy-to-use and well-managed council services, policing, health services and community facilities. It means buildings and public spaces that are accessible for everyone, including people with disabilities, and ensuring our residents live in comfortable, habitable homes. 

Wood Green will be a local hub that caters for more of our residents’ needs and interests, building on the new NHS Diagnostics Hub and Rising Green Youth Hub. There is a clear need for further investment in the Council’s directly delivered services in Wood Green and to be ambitious for the services we deliver, whether that’s a new library, customer services centre, or potentially a new leisure centre. 

5. North London's town centre for all 

Wood Green is a popular, well-established place to shop and eat. Like other town centres, it will need to adapt to changing trends in how people are shopping and using their high streets. 

We want to build on Wood Green’s strengths. It can be a place that nurtures quality local businesses alongside big retailers, where independent food and drink businesses extend its appeal and make a more vibrant and safer town centre well into the evening.  

Wood Green needs more diverse community, cultural and civic anchors – vital to its survival and revival – and this is happening already. A health hub, a leisure centre, a higher education institution and a cultural anchor could all be part of making Wood Green a richer destination to learn, socialise and to enjoy leisure and cultural activities. 

Many residents would like to see more opportunities to inject further colour and character into our public realm, making buildings and public spaces attractive and enjoyable places to spend time - to play, watch performances or just eat a sandwich. It is also important that routes into and around Wood Green make walking and cycling as safe and appealing as possible. 

6. An economy to benefit everyone 

We want to make sure everything we do creates real benefits for local people by making the most of our Council buildings and resources. Francesco working in his Fixlosophy bike shop and workshop in  Blue House Yard.

To make this happen, together, we’ll need energy, skills and investment from a range of partners. In many cases the Council’s role will be to enable collaboration, convening, facilitating, and connecting with others. We will make sure this always involves local people.  

We will bring the right people together at the right time to build momentum, secure investment, develop projects and take practical actions that progress our shared vision. That could be our statutory partners at local and regional level; our businesses; and our voluntary and community sector partners – including those small community groups who make such a big contribution to life in Wood Green. 

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Five placemaking areas 

We’ve identified five ‘Placemaking Areas’ where we think there is the greatest potential for providing new community and civic facilities and places to spend time that will help transform Wood Green 

1. Cultural quarter 

Often hidden away from view, the Cultural Quarter is an ecosystem of creative businesses, some with a global reach.  

We can boost the role all creative businesses play in Wood Green and make culture more accessible through activity on council owned sites, and more visible by making public spaces and active ground floors that reflect what happens behind closed doors.  

We can help deliver more employment and studio space to support existing businesses and encourage new ones to make Wood Green their home.  

Council-owned sites, such as Mallard Place and Kingfisher Place, could be used to attract a Cultural Anchor to boost footfall and improve the profile of the area, creating a place for existing creative businesses to gather around, and a platform to reach out to the public. 

By making an East-West link that connects the Cultural Quarter to the High Road we will help to increase visibility and accessibility to the area. 

2. Library site Wood Green’s popular library with its gardens framing the  entrance, and its colourful mural lining the side alleyway

The Library site is the heart of the high road with the potential to make a new, critically important, attractive link to the Cultural Quarter. Its highly visible, central location means it could be the public services hub of the borough, making a town centre people feel is useful and welcoming.  

The library mall is a potential development site for the council that could be used to house more public services (such as a new Customer Services Centre, or a leisure centre).

There is an opportunity to make new public spaces and new links by working with close neighbours such as Capital & Regional’s Wood Green Mall, and other council-owned sites in the area. 

3. Station Road sites  

The Station Road sites, along with the adjacent Arriva bus garage and Green Ridings House, offer the greatest potential for Wood Green to be ambitious and attract new economic growth to the area.  

The site overlooks an important crossroads on routes to Alexandra Palace, Tottenham, the Civic Centre and Wood Green’s town centre and could act as a gateway on the route up to Alexandra Palace. There is the potential for several tall buildings for homes, business and other uses to support Wood Green’s growth, and space for a major new anchor institution, such as a university.  

A new tree-lined area of public realm could offer respite from the summer sun and soften the character of the High Road and Station Road. 

4. Civic Centre An artist’s impression of the refurbished Civic Centre, due for  completion in 2026

The Civic Centre, along with George Meehan House, will be the heart of democratic and civic life in Haringey, and will embody a sense of civic pride. It will be a place for convening, public accountability, ceremony, and celebration, where residents and visitors will feel welcome.  

The Civic Centre will house the majority of the council’s staff and will extend the footfall and economic activity of the High Road northwards. The greenery of the grounds will offer a haven from the more urban nature of the Town Centre. 

5. High Road and Turnpike Lane 

We will make the High Road and Turnpike Lane more welcoming by creating a network of high-quality public realm improvements for people to spend time in and relax.  Matt Dosa's Under Many Flags artwork installation

This will involve creating new spaces as well as thinking how our existing public realm, such as the Library Forecourt, Lymington Avenue and Spouters Corner, could work better for our residents.  

We want our shared spaces to be cleaner and safer, and animated through a wider range of activities, with more trees, places to sit and rest, and watch performance. They will host a variety of events and public artworks, to reflect the many communities of Wood Green, and welcome all generations including our young people.  

For Turnpike Lane and Ducketts Common this will mean celebrating its cultural heritage, international restaurants and food outlets.  

We will support and improve our street markets and encourage a more diverse economy on the High Road so it can continue to thrive. We will make safer and more pleasant links to the wider borough, including Wood Green’s residential areas and Hornsey, so that walking and cycling is as convenient and pleasant as possible. 

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Download Shaping Wood Green

All of the key highlights are from Shaping Wood Green are detailed above. To see the document in its entirety and enjoy all the photographs taken by Ulrike Leyens and Ben Blossom download using the link below.

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Join the conversation! 

Shaping Wood Green is a continuing conversation. If you would like to be part of the journey and get involved in future discussions about the themes and placemaking areas, please email and we will add you to the Shaping Wood Green contact list. 

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Page last updated:

July 21, 2023