Regeneration of the park
Bromley Council recognises Crystal Palace Park’s potential as a park of local, regional and national significance and is working to bring regeneration to the park and to secure a more sustainable future so that it is enjoyed for generations to come.
Bromley Council, Historic England, and the Mayor of London have recently invested over £2.5 million in park improvements.
The improvement scheme was completed in May 2019 and included:
- The building of a skatepark
- Conservation of some of the Grade I listed dinosaurs, the Grade II listed sphinxes and south terrace steps
- Landscaping and removal of disused structures
- Building of a new café and community space
Brown & Green LIFE Café
The new café opened to the public in May 2019. Designed by Chris Dyson Architects, the half round cedar shingle clad building has been designed to develop a new relationship with the dinosaur islands.
We are pleased to be working with café operator, Brown & Green. The ground floor is a dedicated café space, while the first floor is a community event space available for private hire. Community use is at the heart of Brown & Green’s business, and corporate hire is limited to a maximum of 50 per cent of usage. More information about booking this space can be found on Brown & Green’s website.
Our long-term vision
The council aspires to reinstate Crystal Palace Park as a place of fun and recreation in the spirit of Paxton’s vision, celebrating excellence in landscape and horticulture and providing facilities and events in-keeping with a park of international significance.
We are using the 2007 Masterplan as a guide to our step-by-step programme of regeneration. This plan was given planning consent in 2010, however the funds to deliver this £67m scheme were not identified, and are unlikely to ever be available. However, the Masterplan is still a valuable framework for regeneration in the park.
In March 2015, the council committed resources to bring to fruition an adapted version of the 2007 Masterplan that is achievable within the resources available. The resulting strategy includes three interlinked plans:
- The physical regeneration of the park
- A new and sustainable business model
- A new form of governance for the park that provides the right resources and expertise to manage a regional park with national significance.
The physical regeneration of the park
In 2016, AECOM were appointed to develop a plan for the physical regeneration of the park.
The plan identified the following regeneration aims for the park:
- To reinvigorate Crystal Palace Park as a contemporary and historic showcase in tune with Paxton’s vision and create a place of discovery, learning recreation and fun.
- To develop the park’s local and regional identity, and re-establish its national and international significance
- To provide community benefits through both facilities within the park and connections to local facilities and the economy
- To deliver a contemporary, financially and environmentally friendly, sustainable plan, securing the long-term future of the park.
The priorities for the park’s physical regeneration are:
- To repair and improve infrastructure throughout the park
- Conserve and interpret historic assets in the park
- Reconnect and open up the central walk/Paxton axis through the park
- Restore the architectural presence and grandeur of the terraces
The physical regeneration must:
- Work within the capital budget available
- Deliver the regeneration aims and priorities
- Respond to community engagement
- Respond to business plan findings and opportunities for income generation
- Work, where possible, within the planning principles established by the 2007 Masterplan.
We commissioned specialists Fourth Street to work up a business model for the park which is based on market research and analysis. This work has identified that an endowment fund is likely to be required for the park to bridge the gap between the anticipated income and expenditure.
New form of governance
The Crystal Palace Park Trust are key stakeholders in the development of the regeneration plan, and are shadowing the council’s development work, influencing the direction that the park’s regeneration will take. It is planned that the trust will eventually assume responsibility for the management and maintenance of the park from the council.
The trust’s management of the park will be subject to the development of the sustainable business model, which will be reliant on the park’s regeneration and the development of new and maximised income streams.
The trust comprises seven people with skills, experience and knowledge in a range of fields from planning to law. All members were recruited through a competitive process with a focus on setting up a trust with the skills required to successfully manage the park in the future. If you would like to get in touch with the trust, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
How the Regeneration Plan is progressing
The outline planning application was submitted in January 2020 and the council expects the planning decision to take around six months. In the meantime, officers are working with the trust to progress an implementation plan for the new governance model, as well as developing grant applications to funding bodies including the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
If the outline planning application is approved, the Regeneration Plan will be delivered in three stages over a period of about five years.
Find out more
There have been several community consultation events in the development of the regeneration plan. View the consultation information boards. Feedback from these events has shaped the plan. If you would like to know more, please contact us at CPPRegeneration@bromley.gov.uk
Other plans for the park
National Sports Centre
The Mayor of London is currently developing plans to ensure that the Crystal Palace National Sports Centre, located in the park, is fit for the future. A team of architects, designers, enthusiasts and specialists has been assembled to come up with a plan under the name: On Your Marks!
Four consultation events took place in October 2018. Participants were presented with a range of design studies exploring approaches to the NSC development, and were invited to comment on each. Find out more at www.on-your-marks.co.uk
Capel Manor College
In 2018, Capel Manor College made a successful bid of £4.9 million to the London Economic Action Partnership (LEAP) to develop a new state of the art education facility at the park. It is proposed that the new campus facility will be situated in the south west of the park, next to Anerley Hill. The outline plans for the college’s new buildings were submitted as part of the Regeneration Plan outline planning application in early 2020.