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FAQs: OPDC

Read the FAQs for OPDC, the second Mayoral Development Corporation and leading the UK's largest regeneration project.

What is Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC)?

The Mayor of London established Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC) on 1 April 2015. OPDC is the Mayor’s second Mayoral Development Corporation (MDC) and the fifth functional body.

OPDC Vision: To create and deliver London homes and jobs to facilitate London’s growth and enhance London’s competitive position in the global economy.

OPDC Mission: To capitalise on the significant HS2 and Crossrail investment at Old Oak Common to drive forward the delivery of high quality homes and jobs to facilitate London and UK growth and global competitiveness. To realise the Mayor’s vision and priorities for London and Londoners.

What powers does OPDC have?

OPDC has various statutory powers relating to infrastructure, regeneration, land acquisitions including Compulsory Purchase Orders, streets, business, financial assistance. It is also the planning authority and lead on preparing the local plans, CIL and determining planning applications in this area.

What is OPDC not responsible for?

The London Boroughs of Brent, Ealing or Hammersmith & Fulham would still carry out the following:

  • environmental services including collecting bins
  • health and social care services and career support
  • housing services, including housing benefits
  • leisure and culture services
  • community and childcare services
  • crime prevention and safety
  • education services
  • the role of the local highway authority, including street care, parking and road safety
  • environmental management
  • business and job support, business rates
  • health and safety, licenses, town centre management, trading standards
  • management of Council Tax, student benefits and grants
Who is in charge of the OPDC & how is it funded?

OPDC has a Board that governs its operation and decision making. The Board is Chaired by the Mayor of London (or a Chair Designate). The Mayor would oversee the appointment of all other board members, which at a minimum will include an elected representative from the three local Councils of Brent, Ealing and Hammersmith & Fulham, and anyone else the Mayor deems necessary to appoint.

The set up and operation of the MDC is funded by the Greater London Authority.

Is OPDC really needed?

Yes it is, to support delivery on this scale, it is important to have a single, robust plan with clear direction and governance. Driving forward this scale of development is of strategic importance for London and to ensure its delivery an MDC is needed to plan, and support, this scale new development.

How big is the OPDC area? What is the geographical boundary?

OPDC’s boundary covers an area of 650 hectares (ha). The boundary for the MDC will be split into three areas:

  • the core development area where up to 24,000 new homes and 55,000 jobs will be created, will include Old Oak in Hammersmith & Fulham, North Acton in Ealing and Willesden Junction in Brent
  • the Park Royal industrial area would include the industrial land in Ealing and Brent where there is an opportunity to support the regeneration of the area and to intensify to provide an additional 10,000 new jobs and 1500 homes
  • Wormwood Scrubs where some sensitive enhancements could be delivered in agreement with the Wormwood Scrubs Charitable Trust and the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham.
When would OPDC draw to a close?

It would operate for as long as is necessary to achieve its objectives. No end date is proposed, but the Corporation would review its purpose and operation every few years during its lifetime. Given the scale of the regeneration opportunity, it is clear that it will be a long term project of around 30 years.

Have there been other London Mayoral Development Corporations (MDCs)?

Yes, the London Legacy Development Corporation, which continues to lead the post-Olympic regeneration of Stratford and East London. At the time of posting there are currently no plans for other MDCs.

What is planned for Old Oak and Park Royal?

The Mayor of London wants to transform this underused part of London into a thriving new district with up to 24,000 new homes and 55,000 jobs at Old Oak, linked to plans to build a ‘super hub’ HS2 and Crossrail station by 2026 and to further intensify Park Royal with an additional 10,000 jobs and 1,500 homes.

What existing buildings will be impacted by the development?

There are a number of existing businesses and areas of land for transport functions around the core development area of Old Oak that will be affected. To facilitate the large scale regeneration of this area the majority of these businesses and transport functions will need to be relocated to alternative sites.

HS2 and Crossrail are programmed to open in 2026 so there is a lot of work to do between now and then to facilitate relocations and support delivery of this exciting regeneration project. OPDC is already in discussions with the majority of freeholders in the area.

Who currently owns the land at Old Oak and Park Royal?

OPDC’s boundary area of Old Oak and Park Royal spans 650 hectares and a large portion of the land surrounding Old Oak station, north of Wormwood Scrubs, is currently brownfield land and publicly-owned by central Government. However, in a pioneering approach to accelerate delivery of the largest regeneration scheme in the UK since the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Mayor has secured an agreement in principle from Government to transfer all the public sector and central Government owned brownfield land around Old Oak to OPDC for redevelopment.

There is one large private landowner who operates the UK’s largest car dealership and there are also a number of smaller landowners including Hammersmith & Fulham Council.

Who will determine planning applications in the OPDC area?

OPDC has taken on planning powers across the Old Oak and Park Royal area, including determination of planning applications. However, the Corporation’s planning committee has agreed to delegate certain planning applications back to the local Councils for determination and the local Councils will have representation in the decision making process.

In summary:

  • Old Oak – the Corporation would determine planning applications for major development in Old Oak, with the local Council determining smaller scale applications related to: existing dwellings; existing or new small businesses, shops, and industrial units below 1,000sq.m.; less than 10 new residential units; and small scale transport applications, including cross-overs
  • Park Royal – the Corporation would determine: large planning applications of 50 or more residential units; large commercial buildings of over 10,000 sq.m.; large waste facilities with a waste throughput of over 50,000 tonnes; transport applications for new and altered vehicle, rail, cycle and pedestrian infrastructure; development for a use, other than residential use, that includes provision of 200 or more car parking spaces in connection with that use; and applications to accommodate the relocation of existing uses within the boundary. All other planning applications would be determined by the local planning  authority
  • North Acton – The Corporation would only determine transport applications for new and altered vehicle, rail, cycle and pedestrian infrastructure. The local planning authority would determine all other planning applications in this area.

Read the detailed arrangements for this delegation of planning application.

Why was there a re-consultation on the OPDC boundary?

During the public consultation on the designation of OPDC, over 300 comments were received and a number of concerns were raised about the proposed boundary of the MDC and what it would include. These resulted in boundary amendments including the removal of land to the west of the A406 in the London Boroughs of Brent and Ealing, and land to the south of the Wormwood Scrubs in the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham.

How much of an impact could this scheme have on London?

Research from the Mayor’s Office indicates that the regeneration scheme could be worth up to £7 billion for the London economy, with the potential for Old Oak to supply up to 3 per cent of the Greater London housing requirement and almost 14 per cent of Greater London’s employment need up to 2036.

What is the difference between OPDC & developers?

OPDC is the local planning authority for its area. Our consultations will focus on setting the policies on which planning applications, such as those brought forward by local developers, will be determined. You may have seen and taken part in consultations organised by local developers for Old Oak Park and Oaklands, as well as others.

Does the Government support OPDC?

To date, OPDC has had some very positive conversations with various Government Departments including the Department for Transport (DfT), HM Treasury (HMT) and Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG).

Central Government has played an important role in establishing the MDC and in agreeing to transfer Government owned land to the Development Corporation.