DD2148 Approval of Costs for Royal Docks Team Office Move

Type of decision: 
Director's decision
Date signed: 
01 August 2017
Decision by: 
David Lunts, Executive Director Housing and Land and Interim CEO of OPDC

Executive summary

The relocation of the new Royal Docks team to the Siemens Crystal was tabled on 17th May 2017 and subsequent scoping work has been undertaken to cost the project.  This paper requests £141K to rent the space and equip the team with IT for the first 12 months of the team’s operation.


That the Executive Director of Housing and Land approves £141K for the relocation of the team.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

1.1. The Mayor approved the setting up of a new dedicated resource to be based in the Royal Docks on 22nd February 2017 and MD2049 establishes the budget for early delivery projects, including the office set up costs.  A number of options were considered in a paper taken to EZ Programme Board (EZPB) in May and included in confidential appendix 1.  Following analysis of the options the room in the Siemens Crystal was agreed to be the most suitable option, despite its limited size.  The EZPB paper is appended for information; for brevity therefore this paper is concerned only with the financial ramifications.

1.2. The indicative costs for the office move are broken down as follows:



Office move and legal


Storage and furniture


Misc items (post, training, comms etc)


Items contained in Confidential part 2


1.3 The space available is relatively small; this has been considered by our FM team and with meetings and flexible working this is considered adequate.  We have negotiated a reduced rate for the room with an additional charge for meeting rooms.  The cost of the room is contained in confidential part 2. We have received heads of terms and, subject to DD approval, are targeting occupation by 8th August.  This would be documented by way of a licence for a 12 month period with a three month mutual break, capable of extension.

1.4 The Crystal meeting rooms are relatively costly as they are the basis of their external hire conferencing facilities and only available by the day or half day. To mitigate the risk of financial exposure we have discussed the use of a dedicated meeting room at the Good Hotel which would be permanently available for team use for a flat rate, available from September 2017 (costs in confidential part 2).  This would be a fitted out, branded room with a separate entrance which would provide a more bespoke, informal space to meet and has the additional benefit of providing overspill desk space when necessary.  The Good Hotel has reception facilities for greeting guests and catering when needed.  Key meetings such as the Royal Docks Enterprise Board would still take place at the Crystal and we have allowed a sum for this (contained in part 2)

1.5 The team will consist of 15 FTEs.  The room will have seven fixed desktop PCs available on a hotdesk basis.  There will be a further 8 laptops and 4 ‘touchdown’ spaces for their use which gives an approximate desk ratio of 0.75.

1.6 We have sought advice from internal IT who have advised that the cost of this will be circa £25K, broken down as follows:

Laptops (Windows)


Desktop PCs


Mobile phones (10 new roles only)




1.7 In addition, we may require a small legal budget to document both the occupation of the Good Hotel and the Crystal and for the physical move.  We have allowed £4K for this.

1.8 Further expenditure items include a suitable table for hotdesking, secure cabinets for storing laptops and ad hoc storage (which will evolve once the team is in situ).  We estimate this cost at £20K, though further quotes will be sought as the need emerges.

1.9 We anticipate further running costs throughout the year to be in the region of £30K, to include training, refreshments, post, couriers, promotion and signage.

1.10 In parallel there are further discussions and a scoping exercise under way with New London Architecture to assess the feasibility of setting up a larger office/marketing suite to tell the story of the City in the East and the Royal Docks more widely.  This is at an early stage but has been welcomed by the Advisory Board which met on 28th June 2017.  Decisions regarding the short-term office space have kept this in mind in terms of the lease lengths under consideration and the level of fit out to be undertaken.



Objectives and expected outcomes

2.1. The purpose of locating the team in the Docks is to provide a focused, on-site team to promote and develop the area.  Whilst the team will be permanent the initial office space need not be, and it is intended that flexibility is built in given the potential for new development around the Docks.

Equality comments

3.1. Both the Crystal and the Good Hotel meeting rooms are fully wheelchair accessible and the move presents no further equality issues.

Other considerations

A) Risks:  The size of the space requires careful consideration, and once the team have settled into a routine an element of flexible working will need to be considered to allow e.g. working from home and/or City Hall.

B) The overall objective of this approval is to accelerate and maximise the regeneration of the EZ by having staff on site and we consider this room large enough to accommodate sufficient staff to do this.

C) 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

5.1. This decision requests approval to expend up-to £141k for the relocation of the new Royal Docks team to the Siemens Crystal building.  This can be contained within the budget allocated in MD2049. The above costs are a mixture of equipment/legal/rent and running costs estimated for the year (please refer to Sections 1.6 – 1.9 above, as well as Part 2 for further details).

5.2. This expenditure is to be funded from Royal Docks EZ Projects Delivery Budget within Housing & Land directorate and will be incurred in 2017/18 financial year.

Activity table



Procurement of IT equipment and set up

8th August

Licence agreement with Siemens

8th August

Appendices and supporting papers

Confidential Appendix 1 – LEAP Report: Royal Docks Workspace

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