We would like to hear from the local community to understand your views on changing the building use of The Crystal. We are particularly keen to hear what Newham residents and businesses think about the use of The Crystal being changed to accommodate a civic building such as City Hall. The proposed planning application to change the building use and consultation with local people will allow us to establish the feasibility and principles of the relocation.

If you live, work or volunteer near The Crystal or in Newham, please let us know you views by completing a survey below or by getting in touch with us to request a postal feedback form that you can return via freepost.

The planning application

To enable the potential relocation, we are looking to submit a planning application to Newham Council to formally change the building use. When The Crystal was originally built, the use of the building was limited by planning regulations to holding exhibitions and conferences. The current planning application will allow us to change the permitted use to accommodate regional government and civic functions.

The planning application we are consulting on will involve the change of ‘Use Class’. In planning terms, the Use Class determines the lawful use of a building or land. The move will require us to apply for the change from the limited D1 use (conference and exhibition centre) to ‘Sui Generis’ use (‘of its own kind’) which would include government use and civic functions.

Consultation process

In light of the current restrictions on social gatherings, we have taken the decision to conduct the consultation remotely. As an alternative to face-to-face consultation events, we will be gathering feedback online, via phone calls, virtual meetings and the postal survey.

Let us know your views

To provide feedback on proposed change of use of The Crystal building, please fill in the questionnaire below or submit a freepost feedback form by 15th October 2020.

If you would prefer the survey in a full sized window, please click here.

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Ongoing discussions with the Newham community

As part of the consultation process, we have already begun speaking to various stakeholders in Newham about the future of The Crystal and the regeneration of the Royal Docks. These include Newham Council as well as local groups and organisations.

Wider consultation

Separate consultation with our staff and London Assembly Members has concluded. The responses received will allow us to better understand the needs and requirements, should the decision be taken to relocate.

Statutory Consultation

As The Crystal is located in Newham, Newham Council is the local planning authority responsible for making any planning decisions. After our planning application is submitted and before a decision is made by the Planning Committee, the Council review the applications through a statutory consultation process with nearby residents and statutory bodies.

Next steps

We are looking to submit a planning application to Newham Council in October, and we will continue to engage with local residents throughout the planning process. If the planning permission is granted and we have further progressed on the decision to move, minor alterations could begin in early 2021. If the relocation goes ahead, the essential building works are expected to complete in late 2021 with City Hall relocating after that.