Mayor of London approves plans for East End jobs boost

10 October 2012

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has today approved plans for the crucial redevelopment of the London Fruit and Wool Exchange that will regenerate the Spitalfields area in London's East End creating thousands of new jobs.

At a public hearing in City Hall the Mayor approved plans which retain the building's historic façade whilst delivering 36,000 square metres of office space and 3,000 square metres of retail space. The plans are also expected to create more than 2,300 jobs and generate a contribution of more than £2million towards Crossrail.

The plans will see the demolition of a multi-storey car park and the partial demolition of the London Fruit and Wool Exchange, with the erection of a six storey building for office and retail use .

The Mayor believes the site and its location, in London’s East End, is vital to the prosperity of this fast developing part of the capital and to London’s wider economy. He used powers granted to him in 2008 to ‘take over’ the application, which had previously been refused planning permission by Tower Hamlets Council.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “The historic London Fruit and Wool Exchange, in the heart of London’s East End, is a former commercial epicentre to which producers and buyers flocked from miles around to do business.

“These plans will not only restore the façade to its former glory, but regenerate the Spitalfields area with thousands of new jobs, and brand new commercial opportunities. It will also make a vital contribution to the wider London economy and have a significant impact not just on Tower Hamlets but on surrounding boroughs as well.

“I can find no reason to refuse permission and am of the firm view that this ambitious and important redevelopment should go ahead.”


Notes to editors

- For a copy of the Stage Three planning report, please email [email protected] - On 31st May 2012 Tower Hamlets Council decided to refuse the planning application, against the advice of its planning officers’ report, which had recommended approval. The Mayor believes the development is of major importance for London so decided to ‘take over’ the application and scrutinise it in greater detail in June.

- At the public hearing at City Hall today, the application was presented by the Mayor’s planning officers, and both supporters and opponents of the application made their cases. - Until April 2008, when considering planning applications submitted to him, the Mayor could either leave the Local Planning Authority to decide whether to approve or refuse them or, if they did not conform with the London Plan policies, direct the borough to refuse them. Since then, where development proposals have implications for the capital as a whole, his new powers allow him to determine such planning applications.