New London Architecture

SHIFT Innovation District

Under Construction

SHIFT is a growing, inclusive innovation district based on the Olympic Park, fuelling partnerships and collaboration to create better urban futures

SHIFT is a powerful collective of world-leading organisations, thinkers and creatives creating a mission-oriented living testbed at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford, London.

United by a shared vision to tackle global crises and deliver better urban futures for all, partners include University College London (UCL), University of the Arts London (UAL), London College of Fashion, Loughborough University in London, Lendlease, Here East, Plexal and the London Legacy Development Corporation.

Based at the Olympic Park, SHIFT combines extensive physical and digital resources, cross-sector expertise and growing networks all aimed at directing and turbocharging innovation to find solutions to urban challenges that can be scaled up and applied globally.

Inclusive innovation

The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will play a pivotal role in SHIFT’s mission and its approach to inclusive innovation. With 560 acres of green space, a network of streets and waterways, thousands of residents and daily visitors, as well as a range of academic, business and cultural spaces, it is a vibrant and diverse urban environment in Zone 2 of a global city.

Across its three innovation pillars of climate, health and wellbeing, and movement, SHIFT will work alongside communities, citizen scientists and local government in and around Stratford and utilise the Olympic Park as a living testbed to undertake ground-breaking research, trials and pilot initiatives.

By listening to Stratford residents, identifying the biggest problems they are facing, and using the Park to find solutions, SHIFT will improve the lives of local people while generating insight and learnings that can be scaled to the rest of London, other UK cities and internationally.
From improving health outcomes and leading climate adaptations to advancing technological innovations, SHIFT’s ambition is for Stratford and the Olympic Park to lead the way in demonstrating a blueprint for a better urban future.

Get involved

SHIFT needs brilliant, fearless entrepreneurs, investors, and commissioners to join in its spirit of collaboration and creativity, exploration and experimentation. To strengthen its network and drive change that will shape the future of our cities and citizens. Join us.

Jake Heitland, urban strategist at Lendlease, comments:

“Life in towns and cities is under threat from the interconnected challenges of climate breakdown, spiralling cost of living and worsening economic and health inequities. Urban environments are failing to adapt at the needed pace and take the critical steps towards a net zero carbon world.

“These problems are too big for one individual, organisation or sector to tackle on their own. We must act collectively now and in ways we haven’t before if we are going to find meaningful solutions to these unprecedented problems and improve life in our cities for everyone.

“SHIFT has been launched as a direct response to these challenges. Rather than paying lip service, its mission is to fuel meaningful innovation and deliver tangible public benefit.

“In the years following the 2012 Olympic Games, Stratford has emerged as an international hub for business, education, and creativity. Based on the parks’ physicality, incredible diversity of people and growing list of world-class institutions, innovation naturally started taking place.

“Inspired by this, and how innovation could be fuelled by co-location and clear missions, SHIFT’s seven founding partners came together and decided to formalise this activity – with combined governance, vision and strategy – to direct and turbocharge existing and future projects for maximum impact.

“We are at the start of our journey and we don’t have all the answers. We want to hear from likeminded people and organisations – those who are passionate about bettering lives and improving the world around us – to be part of our mission. Whether you are a young person with an idea, an organisation looking to co-locate and collaborate, or a start up with a project suited to the Olympic Park – get in touch.”

Project information


Under Construction






Olympic Park Ave, London, UK

Team Credits




London Legacy Development Corporation


University College London (UCL)


University of Arts London (UAL)


Here East




Loughborough University in London

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