ADD2132 Royal Docks London Festival of Architecture

Type of decision: 
Assistant Director's decision
Date signed: 
03 July 2017
Decision by: 
Simon Powell, Assistant Director of Strategic Projects and Property

Executive summary

This decision requests approval of expenditure of up to £20,000 to undertake marketing activity, host public events and work collaboratively with the London Festival of Architecture in 2017 in the Royal Docks to advance the marketing of the Royal Docks Enterprise Zone. The outputs of the programme will focus on promotion of the development underway on GLAP sites, and will form ideas for a workspace project for the Silvertown Flyover through a design competition. This will enhance place-making across the wider opportunity area and increase inward investment in the Royal Docks Enterprise Zone.


That the Assistant Director of Housing and Land approves:

  1. £15,000 of revenue budget for a sponsorship package with the London Festival of Architecture focusing on the Royal Docks;
  2. Up to £5,000 of revenue expenditure on the costs associated with an exhibition of shortlisted entries from an ideas competition for a workspace project on land beneath the Silvertown Flyover, hosted by the London Festival of Architecture.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background
  1. The Royal Docks sits at the heart of what has become known as London’s ‘City in the East’ and presents one of the largest regeneration opportunities in London. The wider area has the potential to accommodate up to 25,500 new homes and up to 60,000 jobs, of which around 4,000 homes and 40,000 jobs are likely to be within the Enterprise Zone (EZ).
  2. The London Borough of Newham is one of the most deprived boroughs in London and delivering regeneration quickly and in a way that benefits local residents is the top priority for the LBN and the GLA.
  3. Greater London Authority Land and Property (GLAP) is the major landowner in the area, owning 170ha of land and 96ha of water, dock bed and dock edge infrastructure. Acting on behalf of GLAP, the GLA’s Strategic Projects and Property team within the Housing and Land Directorate, has procured development partners for most of the remaining development sites and planning permission has been secured for 5000 homes and 7 million sqft of commercial development, including on the two key sites at the Royal Albert Dock by Asian Business Ports (ABP) and Silvertown Quays by The Silvertown Partnership (TSP).
  4. A recent Culture Vision for the Royal Docks also sets out the opportunity for large scale interventions and activities in the Royal Docks, and the opportunity to create a network of production, maker and creative spaces in the area. This clustering of creative uses has already begun, with the development of the Carlsberg Tetley building, Dock Road into creative maker and workspace. This new offer will sit alongside existing space for SME’s in the Waterfront Studios.
  5. The London Festival of Architecture (LFA) have approached the Greater London Authority (GLA) and the London Borough of Newham (LBN) with a proposal to create an east London hub and focus to the festival in the Royal Docks. The LFA has drawn up a sponsorship package for the 2017 festival following successful collaboration in 2016. In return for sponsorship, the LFA team will work to cast a spotlight on the Royal Docks in the run up to, and during, June’s events.
  6. The London Festival of Architecture features exhibitions and installations, talks and debates, open studios, tours, family activities, film screenings, student shows and architecture evenings which focus on the importance of architecture and design in London today. Currently, the LFA is sponsored by Nine Elms on the South Bank and the GLA Regeneration team contribute towards the administration costs of the festival. The ‘Supported by Mayor of London’ logo is already used on promotional materials.
  7. Working with stakeholders in the Royal Docks, the GLA facilitated five events for the LFA in 2016. All five events generated communications and marketing for the Royal Docks, which can be built upon in 2017. Previous marketing activity in the Royal Docks has included a New London Architecture Conference in February 2016. Publicity and communications messages have been supported by planned updates and news items on the Royal Docks website.
  8. The promotional marketing and communications of key GLAP land assets in the Royal Docks is at a critical stage as the Royal Albert Dock development has started on site at Silvertown has recently gained planning permission. It is now important, in collaboration with LBN, to support and attract necessary inward investment and secure occupiers to generate business rate income and accelerate further development.


Royal Docks Sponsorship Package 2017

  1. The LFA have proposed that the Royal Docks forms an east London focus to the 2017 festival, to rival Nine Elms’ west London hub. It is proposed that the GLA sponsor up to £15,000, and other Royal Docks Stakeholders asked to each contribute an amount to match the GLA funding and increase the contribution to £30,000 (NB should this additional £15,000 not be contributed by other organisations, GLA will not provide this additional funding). The Silvertown Partnership and Notting Hill Housing have each confirmed £5,000 sponsorship. Royal Albert Dock developers, ABP, have also been approached. The Siemens Crystal have agreed to support the festival in kind by offering space in their exhibition and conference hall during the month of June.
  2. The Royal Docks stakeholders will become principal sponsors alongside Nine Elms. The LFA will develop bespoke programme support from LFA to bring the Festival to the Royal Docks and provide curatorial support from LFA Team and Director, with Royal Docks made a priority site for activities and events.
  3. The LFA will also manage the programming and administration of ideas competitions for the Royal Docks with access to programming through official LFA Call for Entries. Up to £5,000 is required to host an exhibition of shortlisted submissions, prize money and any additional promotional activity. The ideas competition will focus on the GLAP and LBN owned space beneath the Silvertown Flyover, as a potential space for workspace, forming a connector to surrounding workspace projects. LBN have been consulted with and agree to the proposed ideas competition.
  4. Alongside the existing use of Mayor of London branding, reference will be made to the Royal Docks on all marketing and promotional material including the LFA website, the LFA Opening Party and on all relevant press releases and monthly newsletter in the form of the Royal Docks logo.
Objectives and expected outcomes
  1. The objectives of the commission(s) are to:
  2.  Increase the promotion and media activity surrounding the Royal Docks.
  3. Engage with local communities and showcase the development underway in the area, particularly on GLAP sites.
  4. Increase footfall and visitor numbers to the Royal Docks, and widen engagement with the area by creating new partnerships and opportunities.
  5. The cultural and marketing activity set out in this DD supports the Mayor’s priorities to deliver the Royal Docks Enterprise Zone whilst strengthening London’s position as a world city of innovation, business and culture, and will increase sustainable investment in London’s eastern growth area.
Equality comments
  1. The London Festival of Architecture seeks to reach out to a wide and diverse audience to engage Londoners in the built environment that surrounds them. In the Royal Docks especially, the Festival will aim to engage with the borough’s residents, including school groups and community forums to ensure this wide coverage, to deliver on the LBN’s Convergence objectives. Equalities considerations will be taken into account by the GLA in connection with all work procured.
Other considerations
  1. Key risks that could impact on the project are identified as:
  2. Limited promotional activity for the Royal Docks as part of the festival due to a shortage of events in the area. This will be mitigated by stakeholder engagement with key development partners to develop event and installation proposals, together with the LFA.
  3. The overall objective of this approval is to accelerate and maximise the regeneration of the EZ. A strong promotional vision is essential for the Royal Docks in order to accelerate development and communicate the wider opportunity of the Royal Docks Enterprise Zone beyond each individual development site. Stakeholders in the area are eager to see a sustainable plan put in place that can impact and engage with local, London and international audiences.
  4. It is not considered that any further impact assessment is required for this specific decision.
  5. Officers in the Strategic Projects and Property and at the London Borough of Newham have been consulted in the development of the project specifications and outputs.
Financial comments
  1. This decision requests approval of revenue expenditure of up-to £20,000 to undertake marketing activity, host public events and work collaboratively with the London Festival of Architecture in 2017 in the Royal Docks to advance the marketing of the Royal Docks Enterprise Zone.
  2. The expenditure is available from Housing and Land’s Royal Docks EZ Projects Delivery budget and will be fully expended in 2017/18 financial year.
Activity table



Sponsorship package agreed with LFA

February 2017

Open Call Competition Launched

March 2017

London Festival of Architecture

June 2017

Delivery End date

July 2017

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