(Bloomberg) -- George Iacobescu, the man who oversaw the creation of London’s eastern financial district for more than three decades, is stepping down as chairman of Canary Wharf Group to be replaced by Nigel Wilson. 

The former chief executive officer of Legal & General Group Plc will become non-executive chairman on 1 July when Iacobescu steps down from the board after 36 years working on the regeneration of London’s Docklands.

After joining its predecessor in 1988, Iacobescu became chief executive of Canary Wharf Group in 1997 and chairman four years later. He spearheaded the development of a major office district that lured some of the world’s largest banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley and Citigroup Inc. 

“It has been the honor and the challenge of a lifetime to have worked with an extraordinary group of people transforming a derelict dock into a thriving mixed-use city district,” said Iacobescu. “Canary Wharf Group is the first company on the planet to have built an entirely new central business district from scratch.”

Wilson, who championed regeneration projects during his near 12 year stint at L&G, stepped down from the insurer last year. His appointment comes as Canary Wharf Group owners Brookfield and the Qatar Investment Authority attempt to reinvent the district, reducing its dependence on banks who have been shrinking their footprints and building more homes, stores, restaurants and entertainment. 

©2024 Bloomberg L.P.