ADD2348 Victoria Place Plan

Type of decision: 
Assistant Director's decision
Code: 
ADD2348
Date signed: 
11 June 2019
Decision by: 
Patrick Dubeck, Head of Regeneration

Executive summary

This decision form outlines proposals for and seeks approval of a grant of £50,000 to Victoria Business Improvement District to help it deliver a place plan for Victoria. The plan will establish a consolidated vision for the area, meet the objectives of the London Plan and Westminster’s City Plan, and provide spatial detail on how these can be delivered.

It sets out how, given the interrelated and complex issues underpinning any development in Victoria, key strategic partners are being asked to contribute to the cost of undertaking this work.

Decision

That the Interim Head of Regeneration approves:

A one-off grant of £50,000 in 2019/20 to Victoria Business Improvement District to enable the commissioning and delivery of the Victoria Place Plan comprising:

• £25,000 from the Good Growth Fund research and evidence budget (DD2181); and

• £25,000 income from Westminster City Council, repurposed from the West End Good Growth Study, receipt of which was approved under ADD2281.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

Victoria is an area of growth and change. The last ten years have seen an influx of private mixed-use development, new retail and leisure destinations and major investment in the transport network. Victoria is also one of Westminster’s strategic Place Shaping priority areas.

Identified in the London Plan as an Opportunity Area, Victoria is home to a busy transport interchange which enables high levels of public transport accessibility at city, regional, and national scales. The area also has the potential to accommodate a significant number of new homes, jobs, commercial and leisure facilities.

The Victoria Place Plan will represent a consolidated vision and delivery plan for the area which is agreed with strategic partners and stakeholders. It will take into consideration ambitions to transform Victoria Station, aspirations to improve the public realm and connectivity across the wider area, address existing challenges in Victoria neighbourhoods, help establish a clear identity, and work towards objectives set out in the London Plan and Westminster City Plan.

Given the interrelated and complex issues underpinning any development in Victoria, key strategic partners are being asked to contribute to the development of this work. Victoria Business Improvement District (BID) will coordinate an open procurement process to enable appointment of a multi-disciplinary design team and ensure appropriate governance is put in place.

The aim is to establish a combined budget of £400,000 for the delivery of this work. Strategic partners are being asked to contribute to these costs. Network Rail and Westminster City Council are each contributing £100,000. Land owners are being asked to make a combined £100,000 contribution. TfL and GLA have been asked to contribute £50,000 each.

The proposed sources of the GLA’s funding are:

• A £25,000 allocation from the Good Growth Fund research budget 2019-20, approved under DD 2181; and
• £25,000 of income from Westminster City Council, repurposed from the West End Good Growth Study, approved under ADD 2281*.

*Note a £50,000 allocation from the Strategic Investment Fund was approved under ADD 2256 for the delivery of the West End Good Growth Study. After this approval had been secured Westminster City Council made a £25,000 contribution to the cost of delivering the work meaning £25,000 net of this allocation has not been utilised. Given that the Victoria Place Plan shares the objective of facilitating strategic place making and supporting growth of the local economy we propose this is reallocated to the Victoria Place Plan.

Objectives and expected outcomes

The overarching aim is to ensure that the Victoria Place Plan describes the issues and priorities in the area and establishes a clear vision and delivery strategy.

Key objectives for the Victoria Place Plan are that it should:

 Meet the objectives of The London Plan and Westminster’s City Plan and providing spatial detail on how these can be delivered;
 Support the delivery of Crossrail 2 and inform its interaction with the surrounding area;
 Be enabled by a transformative scheme for the redevelopment of Victoria Station and provide the urban framework and guidelines that will inform the development of this scheme;
 Identify future development sites in the area and place them in the context of an overarching development framework that delivers targets set out by the City Plan;
 Establish development quantum to enable future growth, particularly towards delivery of homes (including affordable homes) and jobs;
 Be based on a clear evidence base covering national, regional and contextual policy, potential economic growth in relation to different scenarios and sectors, and baseline infrastructure;
 Set out a concise project delivery plan, that takes account of viability, to realise the identified vision; and
 Act as a precursor and evidence base for a formal planning document to be adopted as statutory policy.

The Victoria Place Plan will identify and outline short, medium, and long-term projects that deliver the vision over a 15-year period.

The programme anticipates this study being completed within a 12-month period from the point of having an appointed consultant team.

The proposed profile will see payment of the grant being made on appointment of the consultant team – anticipated in Autumn 2019.

Equality comments

The proposed study specifically aims to work with stakeholders in order to develop a deliverable vision for Victoria which balances the interests of businesses and residents and is inclusive of all.

The study is not expected to have any negative impact on persons with protected characteristics as defined under the Equality Act, or on relationships between different groups, in Victoria.

As a condition of GGF funding, the project will be required to meet the public sector Equality Duty and demonstrate this through regular reporting of progress.

Other considerations

a) Key risks and issues

Mis-alignment of interests: Working with such a wide range of partners means there is a risk that the study will not meet the requirements of all partners. This risk is being managed by the establishment of strong balanced governance from senior sponsors through to officer working groups and meaningful community engagement.

Procurement: It is proposed that Victoria BID run the procurement exercise for this work. The BID will run the procurement in line with its corporate procurement code and taking account of the GLA Group Responsible Procurement Policy.

Outputs not achieved: GLA Project Manager will define clear deliverables and set up clear milestones to assess and monitor delivery.

b) Links to Mayoral strategies and priorities

In the draft new London Plan, the Mayor committed to:

• Promote and enhance the unique international, national and London-wide roles of the CAZ, based on an agglomeration and rich mix of strategic functions as well as local uses; and
• Support the vitality and viability of the West End as an international shopping and leisure destination.

This work also aligns with the LEAP commitment to supporting enterprise and local economies. It aligns particularly with the strategic and interrelated themes of the Good Growth Fund:

• Strengthening London’s places;
• Growing London’s prosperity; and
• Empowering London’s people.

c) Consultations and impact assessments, including data protection

Successful delivery of the Victoria Place Plan will be dependent on engagement with a range of stakeholders in the public and private sector, including local authorities, landowners, businesses, residents and other users. This process will be managed by Victoria BID and the appointed consultant team with oversight from the project board.

The work will not require the processing of personal data that is likely to result in a high risk to individuals.

Financial comments

As outlined above, the proposed revenue expenditure of £50,000 will be funded from two sources, the Good Growth Fund and a receipt of funding from Westminster City Council, related to the West End Good Growth Study. More information on these funding sources is detailed below.

The cost of £25,000 for this project will be funded from the £6.088 million revenue funding allocated as part of the overall Good Growth Fund total of £61.095 million in MD 2163. This total for revenue funding has been identified for expenditure on costs to support applicants in the development of their project proposals and to provide for associated operational expenditure and programme support costs to enable the delivery of the programme. Included within the revenue funding total is a specific indicative allocation for research of £240,000. This project would meet the definition of research to be funded from this budget and sufficient funding is available.

The remaining £25,000 will be funded utilising a receipt of funding from Westminster City Council for the West End Good Growth Study. Previously £50,000 had been allocated from the Strategic Investment Fund, for this study, as approved in ADD 2281. However, this receipt of funding means the net contribution from the GLA to the West End study is only £25,000 enabling the receipt to be re-allocated and applied to the Victoria Place Plan.

Activity table

Activity

Timeline

Entry into grant

July – September 2019

Announcement

June- July 2019

Delivery Start Date

September-October 2019

Appointment of consultant team

September 2019

Final Draft

September 2020

Final self-evaluation start and finish

December 2020 – Jan 2021

Delivery End Date

October 2020

Project Closure

February 2021


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