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Design Guidance: creating places for women and girls

There is a tendency to view urban planning and design as gender-neutral, not shaped by or in the interest of a particular gender. This assumes that everyone is affected equally. However, while this varies across contexts, in general, cities tend to reflect traditional gender roles and gendered division of labour.

This issue must urgently be addressed through urban design, and it is for the built environment sector and local authorities such as Legacy Corporation to assume this responsibility.

To address this issue, we are developing the UK’s first Urban Design Guidance, focusing on creating places that work for women and girls, with a consultation to be launched shortly. The aim is that this will offer urban professionals some practical guidance on how development schemes and urban interventions can support a gender inclusive urban environment through design and management. 

The Handbook  has been informed by robust local evidence  including two rounds of evidence gathering  involving around 600 women and girls, as well as emerging national and international studies and approaches.

Evidence Base Research: Safety and Belonging for Women and Girls in Public Spaces - Community Research in east London.

How can you be involved in the preparation of the Urban Design Guidance? 

The key evidence base that we used to inform this guidance were comments gathered during our first public consultation that we run in December 2021. This will help us to draft the key design principles that will help us and those delivering in the areas to explicitly consider needs of women, girls and gender diverse people within their development proposals. 

We are looking to publish the draft design principles for your comments in early September 2023. We would love to hear your views on our proposed design solutions. Further information about how to get involved will be available on this page in due course. 

Alternately, please sign up to our Women and Girls safety consultation database HERE to be directly informed about the consultations and the progress of other work that we are doing to improve gender equality in the public realm across the Legacy Corporation area.  

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