RTPI London Event Review: Nine Elms Construction Logistics

On the 21st June, a delegation of 30 planners visited Nine Elms to explore the work that is ongoing around managing construction logistics in the Opportunity Area. Commencing with a talk at Battersea Power Station’s The View, the event explored the strategies that have been implemented and some of the opportunities and challenges of multiple sites and projects coming forward together. Andrew Dorrian, reviewed the scale of the challenge and some of the issues being grappled with in the area. This includes congestion, managing hotspots and improving conditions for pedestrians and vulnerable road users. Andrew further introduced some of the planned measures which have been implemented including a CLP coordination function, road safety schemes, signage and booking systems. Help is available from TfL in the shape of the revised Construction Logistics Guidance and a free training course. For more information please email freight@tfl,gov.uk.

Nick Rabin (Infrastructure Project Director at Battersea), introduced the enormous Battersea project and the strategy for managing multiple contractors across the scheme, maintaining their access as well as catering for new residents moving in as the project develops. It was clear that the strategy has been based on ongoing collaboration with stakeholders including the council surrounding developers and TfL. Their current focus is on commencing muck away by barge after finding innovative solutions to get this muck to the river, working closely with contractors and hauliers to instil best practice around road safety and efficiencies and constant reviews of performance. Good communication on planned works that could be noisy occurs in order to make sure residents and surrounding projects are aware which helps reduce complaints.

Sam Emmett (Project Manager, Wandsworth Council), focused in on the utilities strategy and close working between development partners and utility providers to deliver the utilities the area needs as governed by the utilities strategy. Significant achievements include the utilities corridor which will run through Nine Elms Park, relieving pressure on Nine Elms Lane and sharing utilities trenches. Delivering the construction coordination strategy and utilities plans has been made possible through the establishment of a Developer Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) which provides funding for these tasks.

Focused on collaboration, the tour visited Riverlight where Nick Trollope (Operations Director, St James) gave his experience of resident views of living in the middle of a construction site. Nick noted that for St James one of the biggest challenges post build is the management of .com deliveries. The scheme  is reacting by building a larger post room to handle deliveries.

Finishing on a new section of the Thames Path the tour concluded by looking at the construction of the US Embassy and Covent garden Market. The traffic was horrendous largely as a result of the road closures for the Queen’s speech so it was perfect to demonstrate some of the problems we are battling with.

Thank you to Battersea Power Station for hosting us and to our speakers. All slides are available online.

Andrew Dorrian (RTPI London immediate past chair and Principal Planner at TfL)

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RTPI London Football Tournament 2017!

The RTPI London Football Tournament, sponsored by Indigo, is taking place on the 21 July 2017.

This is a super fun annual tournament which you need to be involved in!  Last year’s winners were Quod were defending their title from the previous year… Will there be a change at the top???  Come, play and have fun!

All you need to do is to email Lucy Barton to book your team, or enquire for more details.

To play in the tournament, you’ll need one squad of seven players per organisation, who work or are seeking work in planning or a related built environment profession, such as architecture, surveying, GIS or development economics. At least three players in each squad should be members of RTPI London.

Each squad should include at least two female players.

Entry into the tournament is on a first come first serve basis because places are limited. The closing date is 14 July 2016. This is a free event but a charge of £100 will be payable by each squad in the case of the team dropping out after 15 July 2016.

Here are the results from last years compition.

Sponsored by:


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RTPI London Event Review: Speed Networking

Speed Networking 2Planners and quantity surveyors were acquainted at the speed-networking evening jointly hosted by RTPI London and RICS Matrics. Held in a private room at The Counting House pub in the City, the event saw attendees swap seats after three minute conversations which were kept flowing with drinks and a break halfway through where food was provided.

In particular, attendees enjoyed the opportunity to meet people working across the built Speed Networking 4environment professions – including urban designers, planning lawyers, planners and surveyors. There was also great variety in the organisations represented, from those working for large established employers to those who had started their own businesses. This made for a lively evening where ideas, business cards and, inevitably, poor jokes about speed dating, were shared. The only complaints on the night were of sore throats from too much talking!

Speed Networking 1RTPI London would like to thank RICS Matrics for their joint organisation of this event. Following the success of the evening, we hope to organise more ‘inter-professional’ events -watch this space for information.

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RTPI London – Nine Elms, The Good the Bad and the Dirty: Managing construction impacts from multiple sites – 21 June 2017

Wednesday 21st June 2017,09.15-11.00am
The View, Battersea Power Station, Kirtling Street, London SW8 5BN

Presentations and Tour!

This CPD event will explore ‘Construction Logistics Plans’ including TfL’s soon to be refreshed guidance, the benefits of planning and how it is being applied in Nine Elms.

Come along and debate their merits and role in the planning system with leading industry professionals delivering major projects.

The event will begin at 09.30 at Battersea Power Station with four short presentations followed by a short tour of the area.


  • Andrew Dorrian – Principal Planner, Transport for London
  • Nick Rabin – Infrastructure Project Director Battersea Power Station Development Company.
  • Sam Emmett, Project Manager, Wandsworth Council.
  • More speakers TBC

Tickets ready to book now!

Nine Elms Picture
This event is free and open to all those who work or study in planning and related built environment professions. Places are strictly limited and allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.
Please be aware that the visitors’ entrance to Battersea Power Station is from Pump House Lane entrance located on Battersea Park Road. On your arrival please report to the security team at the Gatehouse on Pump House Lane who will direct you further.
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RTPI London Event Review: Developing London’s Rail Infrastructure – Monday 15th May 2017

IMG_6704It is less than 18months until the start of Elizabeth line services in the capital. Ahead of the curve, 7 days before the BBC’s Fifteen Billion Pound Railway programme (like Top Gear for train fans) started, RTPI London in conjunction with WSP organised a seminar to look at some of the lessons learned from Crossrail. This was together with a review of

the Hybrid Bill process; DCO’s and a review of what projects are coming next.

Andrew Dorrian (immediate past chair at RTPI London and Principal Planner at TfL) reviewed the latest position on the Mayor’s Transport Strategy. Due for consultation post election, Andrew presented some of the emerging key themes including a focus on healthy streets, cycling Crossrail 2, Bakerloo Line extension and maximising existing assets including national rail services. The plan predicated on the continued future growth of London will potentially set even more ambitious mode share targets to manage demand in London. Andrew further summarised the Mayor’s priorities for the London Plan with a review of the City for All Londoners document. This starts to look at where potential new growth will be centred including within town centres and around our stations.

IMG_6705Julie Davis (Land Use Planning Manager at Crossrail), reviewed progress of the construction of the Elizabeth line and presented the consenting route with some of its advantages and challenges. Julie noted the Hybrid Bill whilst with a long lead in time enables a package of consents to be achieved for a scheme. It usually comes with a schedule of conditions and it is for the promoter working with the contractor to ensure these conditions are abided by. This can become quite challenging depending on the arrangement of contracts. Crossrail set up a delivery mechanism so that the contractors were responsible for preparing the detail for conditions / any variations and Crossrail themselves signed off any details prior to submission to the LPA. Julie noted that partnership working with Local authorities across the route has been achieved through a forum, whereby such matters have been achieved. In developing the project Crossrail have amassed a wealth of information as part of their learning library. This is available at. http://learninglegacy.crossrail.co.uk/.

Siobhan Wall a former project manager for Crossrail, explained the innovative approaches Crossrail used to recycle materials. Thinking of the excavated material from the tunnels as not waste but a vital resource they worked with the RSPB to identify a project at Wallasea Island in Essex to create a new Nature Reserve. Excavated material was transferred by train and trucks to three jetties along the Thames, Northfleet, Limmo Peninsula and Barking Riverside. From there material was loaded onto ships for the onward journey to Walllasea. Siobhan explained that early partnership with the RSPB was critical to the success for the project and understanding what the material could be best used for. This project was part of a wider strategy for reusing material excavated at a number of sites across London and the South east and contributed towards 98% of Crossrail’s material being beneficially reused. This has profound impacts for an Environmental Statement for a project and critically a plan which is deliverable as to how material will be sorted, transported and reused is necessary from the start. For more information, please see, http://www.crossrail.co.uk/sustainability/environmental-sustainability/materials-and-waste.

IMG_6706Colin Turnbull (Associate Director) at WSP, shared lessons learned for the delivery of major rail projects under Hybrid Bills. Some of the top tips shared included the recommendation to start conversations early and get cross political support with both houses. The duration of a Hybrid Bill process means that it can often cross one or two political cycles and there is a challenge that a project can be ‘derailed’ by a change in Government. The length of an Environmental Statement was called into question. Crossrail’s ES was significantly long with a number of volumes. HS2’s has eclipsed this at 50,000 pages. Ultimately there needs to be a call on the length of the assessment and how user friendly these documents are, without impacting on the necessary assessment. Working with the LPA’s and stakeholders from the off was a seen to be a key way of agreeing the scope of assessment and smoothing the delivery process.

It is clear that Crossrail has given us a vast amount of knowledge and key lessons learned around delivery of a major project through a Hybrid Bill process; this can be applied on major infrastructure projects going forward of which there will be many. Our thanks go to all of our speakers and to WSP for organising and for their kind hospitality.



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RTPI London Event Review: From academia to practice

RTPI London and the Urban Design Network hears from some of London’s top thinkers about what makes for an “excellent” public ream.

Perhaps for some, the challenge of answering the question of what makes an excellent public realm in an hour would be impossible, but our speakers had a good go. The bringing together the school of architecture and school of planning at Westminster allowed practitioners and students from both fields to discuss a question with, it seems, an infinite amount of answers.

Marion Roberts, Professor of Urban Design at Westminster University, gave an overview of Urban Design theory using examples of public spaces at home and abroad, with a clear message that success of a public space is just as much down to its management as its design; the opportunity, for example, for local people to take ownership of the public realm is a great factor contributing to its success, this can be as simple as local people being given control of raised flowerbeds.

From the theory to the practical, the Chair of the Urban design Network, Eileen Thomas, navigated delegates through a maze of do’s and don’ts from her experiences. We were shown a plethora of physical interventions in the public realm that she has observed and been involved with over her career, offering insight into what she thought made the successes. The message; detail is just as important as the strategy for making things work. From paving design to vehicle controls, infil developments and soft landscaping, some inspiring design approaches, some eye-wateringly incongruous. Eileen’s years of experience as a practitioner had certainly honed her eye for detail and gave the younger practitioners in the room food for thought.

Back to the theoretical, research Assistant Neal Shasore did a stirling job, stepping in last minute to offer his thoughts about the crucial factors to ensuring involved in the success of the public realm is just as much about what happens post-design process, and the crucial role that collaboration between agencies plays in ensuring better outcomes, using Croydon’s “place-making” department, bringing together planning, economic developments, urban design under one umbrella, as an example. There was also, he said, a part for the professional institutions to play in facilitating this.

Finally, an excellent on-the-ground example of regenerating Barking Riverside summarised very well by Douglas Ingils from Alex Lifshutz architects, described the design approach and challenges for creating a new public space as part of the development. With options still being discussed as to what final uses will be in surrounding areas, the complexities involved in making the design work from a planning point of view could not be ignored, particularly with regards to phasing.

The post presentation discussion again focused on the need for collaboration between professions, some more experienced practitioners referring back to days when Councils had their own in-house design teams. Interesting questions about choice of density at Barking riverside followed. And on the eve of the publication of Design Guide for Planners by Urban Design London, the question of whether design codes could have helped or hindered success at Barking Riverside, laid the foundations for a whole separate discussion, which time did not allow as to follow through with, laying foundations for a future discussion by the RTPI Urban Design Network on this topic alone.

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FORTHCOMING EVENT: Speed Networking – 25 May 2017

To be held at the Griffin Room, The Counting House, 50 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3PD at 6.00pm – late!

Counting HouseJoin RTPI London and RICS matrics for an evening of fast-paced speed networking. Meet a constant flow of interesting people from across the built environment professions, build your network, exchange business cards and develop successful future relationships.

The ticket price includes a drink and nibbles. This promises to be a great, sell out evening. Given the popularity of this event, please book your place as soon as possible to avoid disappointment. speed networking

Cost: £10 per ticket

To book go to: http://www.rics.org/speed-networking

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Event Review: RTPI London Networking Drinks – April

Drinks 1On Thursday 20th April 2017 RTPI London Young Planners held a drinks networking event, hosted and sponsored by recruitment agency Mattinson Partnership, at the stylish Drake & Morgan bar, Kings Cross.  The event was well attended by planning professionals in their first ten years of practice working at employers as diverse as EDF Energy, DCLG, City of Westminster, Transport for London and Capita.  Those who attended enjoyed sampling the free wine, beer and food on offer!  They also had the chance to talk with specialist Town Planning Recruitment CoDrinks 2nsultant Freddie Bell and team, an ideal opportunity to get there name known in the sector.  The RTPI London YP Team would like to say a special thank you to Mattinson Partnership for their support with this event.

 If you weren’t able to attend in April please come and join us at our next event!

Drinks 3

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Developing London’s Rail Infrastructure – 15 May 2017

The development of major rail infrastructure in London also helps to unlock growth and development opportunities across the south east and beyond, to benefit future generations.  The lessons learnt from projects such as the Elizabeth Line can be carried across to the planning and delivery phases of other key infrastructure projects (rail or otherwise).


  • 6:30pm – Introductions
  • 6:40pm – The need for large infrastructure development in London, Andrew Dorrian (TfL)
  • 6:55pm – Crossrail overview and the role of planning in delivery, Julie Davis (Crossrail)
  • 7:10pm – Wallasea Island, TBC
  • 7:25pm – Lessons for delivery of other rail projects under Hybrid Bills, Colin Turnbull (WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff)
  • 7:40pm – Conclusions and Q&A
  • 7:55pm – Refreshments and Networking


This is a free event, but please book your space here.

This conference, hosted by the RTPI London, Crossrail and WSP, will explore the need for, and delivery of large scale infrastructure development in London. It will also provide an overview of the crucial role of planning in the delivery of large infrastructure projects and development of innovative and sustainable mitigation measures, such as re-use and placement of excavated material at Wallasea Island.  We will also explore lessons learned from other rail projects under hybrid bills in order that we may be better equipped to deliver major rail infrastructure provision over the forthcoming decades.

Rail infrastructure

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RTPI London Treasure Hunt – 20 July 2017

RTPI YP London’s Treasure Hunt is back!

The Treasure Hunt will start and finish at the Graphic Bar, with complimentary drinks provided courtesy of our sponsors,  KDH Associates

Turn up as a team of 4-5 or come along as an individual and join a team. After welcome drinks, teams will set out into the depths of Soho.

Can you answer all of the questions by 8pm?

Time is tight; there are prizes for the top-scoring teams!

Programme –

  • Arrival at Graphic Bar: 6pm
  • Welcome Drink/Team Assembly: 6-6:50pm
  • Treasure Hunt: 7-8pm
  • Drinks and prize giving: 9pm
  • End: midnight


Book yourself on as a team, the team leader ONLY needs to book and pay for the team.

Or, book on as an individual and we will put you in a team on the night.

NB. Please use paypal to secure your place.

Treasure hunt flyer

Huge thanks to our sponsors who has made this evening possible.

KDH New Logo

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