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Madison Square Garden (MSG) Sphere Planning Application

The Madison Square Garden Entertainment Company (MSG) proposals for a multi-use leisure and entertainment building adjacent to Stratford Station include a full planning application for the main venue which would have a main auditorium (capacity for up to 21,500 people), a smaller music venue and nightclub (capacity for up to 1,500 people), members lounge, restaurants, bars, external terraces and podium for assembly and leisure and new bridges and pedestrian connections across the site. A new entrance to Stratford Station is proposed as part of the package of planning obligations that would be secured with this application, but this element would be the subject of a separate consent.

The venue will be covered in LED panels designed to display moving images, artistic content and branded advertising across the entire façade of the building and so there is a separate application for advertisement consent to display adverts on these and other locations within the development.

There are also proposals for MSG to make use of car parking spaces at Stratford International Car Park to provide 111 wheelchair accessible blue badge spaces. These are standalone proposals linked with the main venue.

Where are we in the planning process?

The LLDC Planning Decisions Committee (PDC) considered the planning application for the main venue and advertisement consent at its meeting on 22 March 2022.

The PDC made the following decisions:

  • To grant planning permission for the MSG sphere venue, subject to the planning conditions and a s106 legal agreement to secure necessary mitigation, including transport enhancements at Stratford Station.
  • To grant advertisement consent for 25 years, subject to a review mechanism for the advertisement controls being secured at a 5 year period, which would be brought back to the Committee for approval.
  • The MSG proposals for Blue Badge car parking Stratford International car park was not considered and was deferred until a later meeting.

The PDC considered the advertisement consent review mechanism and Blue car parking proposals at its meeting on 24 January 2023.

The PDC made the following decisions:

  • To approve the review mechanism subject to the completion of a legal agreement securing the review mechanism and additional controls.
  • To defer the MSG proposals for Stratford International Car Park until further information is made available to PDC.

The PDC considered the Blue Badge car parking proposals at its meeting on 25 April 2023  and resolved to grant planning permission for this proposal subject to conditions and the completion of a legal agreement in relation to the main MSG venue.  

Mayor of London

On 20 November 2023, the Mayor of London directed LLDC to refuse the MSG Sphere Planning application.

 

Secretary of State Direction

On 1 December 2023, the Secretary of State issued a Direction which requires the LLDC to refer the MSG Sphere Full Planning Application and related Advertisement Consent proposal to him.

Next Steps

An inquiry will be held to consider all relevant aspects of the proposed development. All arrangements for the inquiry will be made by the Planning Inspectorate and details about the procedure and programme for determining both applications will be published here in due course.

Public consultation

The public consultation period on these applications has ended.