Clear Channel is set to upgrade 500 public pay phones across London through its Adshel Live network which will see it plant a tree on a local street for every phone upgrade.
Alongside a touch screen unit, each new box will also offer Wi-Fi and interactive maps with the company having committed to having 100 on the streets by the end of the year.
Speaking to The Drum, Justin Cochrane, Clear Channel UK CEO explained of the decision to update public call boxes; "The interesting thing is that people still use them - the really disenchanted use them because people don't want to use them from home. Children still call services like ChildLine from a phone box and all of those numbers will be free."
David Elliott, CEO at Trees for Cities, said, “Trees are one of the most vital elements of liveable and healthy cities. They help create spaces that promote physical activity, reduce mental illness, and enhance community cohesion and a reconnection with nature. They clean pollutants from the air, prevent flooding, mitigate the urban ‘heat island effect’, shield traffic noise, and provide an essential habitat for the biodiversity that supports our ecosystem services. Tree-lined streets increase property values and promote economic activities in business districts. It is remarkable how much we rely on trees, yet how much we can take them for granted.”
Elliott added, “Our cities’ environments and tree stocks face multiple risks and threats, and their futures are integrally tied to the actions of the business sector. The leadership and vision that Clear Channel has demonstrated in supporting and promoting this programme is truly inspirational. They have set a high benchmark and a challenge to other companies to follow that can help secure resilient urban environments for generations to come.”
The phone boxes were revealed at Clear Channel UK's Upfront event in London on Thursday evening.