Conditional sale agreement for land at Earls Court

Reference code: 
PCD 162
Date signed: 
07 March 2017
Authorisation name: 
Sophie Linden, Deputy Mayor, Policing and Crime

Executive summary

The MPS Estates Strategy 2013-2016 seeks to provide suitable accommodation to meet operational requirements, reducing the amount of space occupied and maximising the use of space retained whilst also meeting Mayoral and Central Government priorities to release surplus public land for housing and schools. 
    
As part of this strategy, approval was given in March 2016 to close Paddington Green Police Station and for the MPS to enter into discussions with the neighbouring land owner for the development of a new facility on part of the site and the redevelopment of the remainder for housing. Since that approval was given there has been a significant change in circumstances resulting in alternative sites being considered for the new facility, which may provide better value for money. 
 

Recommendation

The DMPC is asked to;
1.    Support the analysis of three options for the new facility including:
a.    Continue work with Berkeleys at Paddington Green
b.    Direct the MPS Property Department Services to analyse the potential purchase of commercial land (see Part 2 for details).
c.    Consider alternative land within the MPS portfolio 
2.    Agree to the MPS entering into a non-binding Conditional Sale Agreement with respect to the commercial land to enable detailed discussions with the land owner.
3.    Approve funding up to £750,000 to develop the three alternative locations.  

Non-confidential facts and advice to the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime (DMPC)

1.    Introduction and background

1.1    In March 2016, the MPS received approval to close Paddington Green Police Station and to enter into discussions with the neighbouring land owner for the development of a new facility on part of the site and the redevelopment of the remainder for housing.
 
1.2    Since the approval there have been significant changes in circumstances, in particular the property market within central London for residential property has weakened considerably primarily driven by the substantial increase in stamp duty coupled with uncertainty around Brexit.

1.3    This has had an impact on land values and the economics of the original business case, as the sale of land at Paddington Green underpins the financial viability for the construction of the new building. In view of this, the MPS is now investigating alternatives sites for the new facility, which may provide better value for money. The MPS also confirms it is continuing with the exit of Paddington Green, which is due to be completed by September 2017.

1.4    The completion of the new facility will be in 2021 to 2022. It is critical to ensure operational continuity between existing buildings and the new facility. There are two options which include extending a lease in one existing building or a temporary decant in to an existing freehold building delaying its disposal.

2.    Issues for consideration

2.1.    Due to the confidential nature of the proposal the detail is held in Part 2

3.    Financial Comments

3.1.    The funding of the £750,000 to develop the three alternative locations for the facility is provided for in the capital programme.

3.2.    Further details are discussed in the Part 2.

4.    Legal Comments

4.1.    In carrying out its functions, the MOPAC may, under paragraph 7, Schedule 3 of the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 (“the Act”) “do anything which is calculated to facilitate, or is conducive or incidental to, the exercise of the functions of the Office”. This includes, entering into contracts and other agreements, in addition to acquiring and disposing of property (including land). The MOPAC has the power to dispose of surplus properties (including land) under paragraph 7 (2) (b) of Schedule 3 of the “the Act”.

4.2.    In accordance with the MOPAC Scheme of Consent and Delegation approval is required by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for all MPS requests to go out to tender for contracts of £500,000 or above, and to approve contract exemptions (such as direct awards).  


5.    Equality Comments

5.1.    Future investment in the core estate will ensure full compliance with the Equalities Act 2010 with regards to the provision of accommodation. Facilities for staff working in all buildings will be enhanced over time as investment is focused on those assets core to operations.

6.    Background/supporting papers

6.1.    None.