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The 13.49ha Albert Island site is located between the Royal Docks and the River Thames, at the eastern end of the London City Airport runway, in the London Borough of Newham. The site is a vital part of the regeneration of the Royal Docks.

The vision for the redevelopment of Albert Island is to regenerate the site, create an attractive and well-connected, sustainable employment hub with over 1,800 new jobs for Newham over 70,000m2 of floorspace. The aspiration for this new employment district is to create a real integrated piece of city, open and permeable to the public, with good cycling and walking links, an enhanced river frontage and high-quality public realm.


The proposed shipyard will return some of the boat building heritage to the Thames, and provide vessel operators with local facilities within the realms of a London postcode. There is a clear need for a shipyard near the operational hub for tourism and industry along the River Thames, a conclusion supported by numerous reports and studies. A key issue was to ensure that the shipyard operation was compatible with flood defences, including future requirements associated with TE2100 (Thames Estuary 2100 Plan) and climate change.

We successfully resolved a future proofed flood defence strategy, integrated with the public realm and river edge enhancements, working closely with the Environment Agency and other stakeholders. This required many iterations to agree proposals for re-alignment of flood defences, set back to buildings, ecological inter-tidal terraces, as well as upgrading an existing flood gate to serve the boatyard. The outcome enhances viability of the project by unlocking development on the most valuable parts of the site whilst upgrading the flood defences and enhancing the amenity use and ecology of the river edge.

We also developed a sustainable surface water drainage strategy, including innovative bio-retention systems integrated within the car parks and new drainage outfalls into the River Thames integrated within the river edge terracing.

Planning approval was granted in March 2021.

Read more in this Architects’ Journal article.


Client: London & Regional Properties and Greater London Authority

Architect: HaworthTompkins

Status: Planning approval granted


Renders courtesy of London & Regional Properties

Albert Island