As other London galleries or would-be galleries scrap their plans or close their outposts in response to the double whammy of Covid-19 and a looming no-deal Brexit, the blue-chip Pace Gallery has announced its plans to expand its footprint in the city, where it will take over the 8,600-square-foot space abandoned by defunct mega-gallery Blain Southern in March.The new space, located in Mayfair’s Hanover Square, is slated to open in fall of 2021 and will be renovated by Jamie Fobert Architects, who designed Pace’s first London gallery, which it opened in Soho in 2011. The Hanover Square gallery will replace Pace’s gallery inside the Royal Academy of Arts Building, which is to close in summer 2021. With its new gallery, which will integrate ground- and basement-level space, Pace aims to develop a “more robust exhibition schedule” and to “engage with more European artists and continue to grow its contemporary program.” The space will additionally be able to accommodate live and experimental programming, which the gallery has been focusing on intensively as of late, with the first Pace Live event outside of New York to take place next year.“This is a time for investment and faith in London. Its role as a cultural hub remains undisputed given the number of world class institutions on its turf, and even staring into the face of Brexit I am convinced that London will remain an economic capital of Europe and a crucial centre for the art market,” said Pace president and CEO Marc Glimcher in a statement.The Art Newspaper speculated that the announcement had been timed to distract from allegations, recently brought to light in Artnet News, that Pace has allowed a toxic workplace to thrive in its New York offices. The gallery is in the midst of an investigation into these accusations.