` Coronavirus and Lockdown
Corona and Lockdown: What will happen to cities if the majority start working from home?

For most of us, offices have been our home for the past few months and there is no prospect of the office going as usual for the next several months.

Many large technology companies have said they are considering having their staff work permanently from home. Employees also understand that working away from the office is not only possible, but in many cases a priority.

A new way of working is being adopted. This new way of working or style will have a profound effect on our domestic life and if the scope of these effects is widened, it will also affect our towns and cities.

In England and Wales, about a quarter of the 'office space' is in central London.

To understand the full implications of these changes, we spoke to four urban life experts who are also working from home.

Will the city centers be empty

I think we will start going back to the offices but not the way we used to.

People work harder when they are together and in close contact with each other. There is a very reliable 20-year study on this which proves how important it is.

There are many things you can't do without other people. Man is basically a social animal.

An empty street in Moscow 

Gould Smith Professor of Sociology:

I think we have reached this stage. The relationship between time and place and social life is being redefined and clarified and we are at a crossroads. We may see some fundamental changes. Some things never came back.

Head of Policy and Research at Odd Beckley Lock, Royal Town Planning Institute:

It is true that some companies have said that they should always allow their employees or staff to work from home. Twitter has said so.

Facebook has said the same. The head of Barclays Bank has said that calling 7,000 people to the office may be a thing of the past.

The experience of going to the office in London is very different from going to the office in another city. Reducing the size of offices will affect small, medium and large cities in different ways.


The evacuation of cities began a long time ago.

Many businesses may not return to the city center or city centers and think that this is a very 'risky' job and other economic priorities may lead people to ask the question why so many large offices Why spend money?

I think working from home will have far-reaching effects. This will increase the pressure on homes. This will affect gender relations in the home, make child rearing and work responsibilities more ambiguous and increase stress.

Odd Buckle Lock:

I think there will be more diversity in different populations. If people want to meet each other, more people will eat out and social activities will increase.

Working from home will mean that one day people will have to go to offices in local communities. There will be more development in these populations now.

It will have the opposite effect on large cities, where the question arises as to whether vacant offices should be used. There may be different ways to do this. One is to bring them into residential use, but this method has not been successful in the past.

We may need more conference halls.

Paul Cheshire:

When more people start working from home, the demand for bigger houses will increase. You will need a place to work which will make the rest of the house narrow.

You may have to go to your headquarters for a meeting once or twice a week. So you will travel farther and farther away from the city center in search of affordable housing.

On the other hand, there may be some people whose presence in the office is very important. Those who stay together and stay in touch with each other and feel the need to move to central areas of the city.

You may have to use the office desk together with other people, in special places where people sometimes like to go for better IT facilities or stay away from children at home for a while.

In small towns, hot desks or office tables that many people use will begin to make room for them.

We will need more space. You will need places that are close to the stations so that it is easy to get to the city center.

You will have to build millions of new homes in open spaces 45 minutes from central London because there is so much open space.

The fastest growing area for people coming to London is Peterborough, York and Somerset. People live miles away to get more land and more space. This trend will increase.

This will be accelerated if we do not have more land available where transportation is available and where it is easier to get to work.

What will happen to transport and the environment?

Margaret Bill, 

Professor of Transport and Environment, University of Newcastle:

According to a study in Newcastle 50, the farther you go, the higher your carbon emissions.

Paul Cheshire:

One of the problems with open spaces is that people have to travel farther.

Margaret Bell:

I'm worried that people will buy more cars and use more. All we need to do is encourage people to use bicycles as much as possible and move people closer to their workplaces and more people to work closer to their homes.

Paul Cheshire:

Home energy use in England is not very efficient. Spending more time at home will lead to more carbon emissions because unlike modern offices, homes do not use energy as efficiently.

Margaret Bell:

A study in Leicester found that working from home consumes 75% more energy than you save by going to the office. Working at home has a 'carbon footprint' or emissions because living at home keeps your homes warm and requires more gas and electricity than much energy you spend in the car in your car. Are

Therefore, it would be wise to create places in local communities that people can use together.

What will happen to cities?


All cities are important because they provide an opportunity to meet. Where change comes from. This change and interconnection between different colors, races and cultures is characteristic of cities and cannot be of a suburban area or town.

Bacole Lock:

Each of us must have gone through a lockdown and the changes that have taken place and the habits that have been formed as a result of it and have now reached an opinion on what they want and what should be and what should not be.

As city planners, we must first find out what they want. But there will be financial difficulties.

Paul Cheshire:

The second problem is the fear of people, how long it takes people to get out of the fear that their lives are in danger in the presence of a crowd or more people. I think this fear will be lessened by the availability of vaccines.

Once that happens, the offices will push, and what we want in the city center will have an impact. This may take some time.


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