Sugar House Island – Hybrid Planning Permission and ongoing advice for a new 10 ha neighbourhood in east London

Client: Vastint
Location: Stratford

GL Hearn is providing ongoing planning and development advice for a new mixed-use neighbourhood in Stratford close to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

GL Hearn has been retained by Vastint UK since 2010, having prepared and successfully negotiated a hybrid planning permission (part detail, part outline) with the London Thames Gateway Development Corporation (LTGDC) (now falling within the jurisdiction of the London Legacy Development Corporation) for 1,200 new homes, a 350- bedroom hotel, approx. 624,000 sq. ft of office and (other) commercial/community floorspace designed to bring 2,500 jobs to the area, and all associated landscape and infrastructure at Sugar House Island, Stratford. Following the grant of Hybrid Planning Permission in September 2012, GL Hearn continues to provide on-going consultancy services and strategic planning advice to Vastint UK, particularly in relation to the preparation, submission and negotiation of reserved matters applications for 14 development plots across Sugar House Island.
The site includes two conservation areas as well as a number of buildings, yards and chimneys ‘of note’ and presents a number of complex issues, not least the sensitive location and proximity of the Three Mills Heritage Buildings (Grade I and II Listed), but also the close proximity of adjacent residents. During the hybrid/outline as well as reserved matters stages, GL Hearn undertook significant discussions with Heritage and TVIA experts to properly ascertain the planning risks and suitable strategies to address and minimise any heritage-related planning issues. Considerable community engagement as well as pre-application and post-submission discussions with LLDC PPDT Officers, its Quality Review and Built Environment and Access Panels and Planning Decisions Committee Members, key stakeholders (including LB Newham, TfL, Historic England, etc.) as well as local residents, were undertaken to ensure that the project can be suitably delivered.
A breakdown of our services in relation to Sugar House Island is provided below:

  • Negotiation of design particularly in relation to the ‘full’ elements of the application as well as a range of flexible parameter plans and design codes
  • S106 negotiations
  • Close working with the Local Planning Authority and numerous stakeholders
  • Preparation and negotiation of a Hybrid Planning Application as well as various Reserved Matters and Full Planning Applications associated with the wider development
  • Securement of permission for a variety of flexible uses
  • Agreement and discharge of conditions relating to outline and detailed elements
  • Development consultancy – compulsory purchase advice
  • Economic/Financial Viability Appraisal
  • Employment Creation Study and Retail Impact Assessment

The first phase of the development, Dane’s Yard, offers approx. 9,000 sqm of imaginative workspace, bars, restaurants and other ancillary uses in a cluster of eight new and old (refurbished) buildings. Situated around a 40m tall wooden tower, the buildings follow historic footprints and retain old yards with riverside views. GL Hearn assisted the client and project team (including architects Ten Four, Waugh Thistleton and Planit-IE) throughout all stages of the project to deliver this exciting element of the wider redevelopment of Sugar House Island.

Vastinct UK's project was awarded a New London Award 2019 in the 'Masterplan' category. Judge Monica von Schmalensee praised the integration of new buildings with old ones. This is alongside the way it 'takes back the street' and encourages families to move into the area.

For more please visit: 

  • Share
Our design team, including GL Hearn and ARC-ML, have worked hard over a number of years in a complex planning arena to achieve consents for what we hope will be an exceptional scheme which will become the catalyst for the transformation of this part of London.
Andrew Cobden