The new East London town hall is finally opening after months of delays, a source has confirmed.
Greater London Authority (GLA) staff have been informed that from today (March 21) they will be able to move into the building formerly known as The Crystal on the Royal Docks, upon completion of construction work.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan first announced plans to move City Hall to East London in November 2020, in a bid to save more than £60 million over five years.
But the move has been delayed four times due to ongoing construction work – originally slated for November 2021.
Read more: Sadiq Khan confirms that the town hall to Newham . will move
The disaster-laden move descended further into a farce last month when staff were told the building had yet to be completed four days before they were due to move.
GLA staff are temporarily working from the London Fire Brigade headquarters on Union Street, while the new, unfinished Town Hall has been used to host several large set-piece London Assembly meetings attended by Sadiq Khan.
Many members of GLA staff, including members of the London Assembly and officials working for Sadiq Khan, have privately expressed their dismay at the relocation of the iconic former Town Hall building near Tower Bridge.
City Hall Conservative leader Susan Hall said last week: “Like the ‘boy who howled the wolf’, Sadiq Khan shouted ‘City Hall!’ so often I don’t know what to believe anymore. We are apparently going to move in on Monday, but we haven’t heard that before.”
Ms Hall also expressed concern that the series of setbacks from the move will have eroded the alleged £60m savings outlined by Sadiq Khan.
She said: “We are very interested in knowing how much money these delays have cost us. The troubled nature of ‘camping’ in various locations, including being evicted several times from our new home, has had a significant impact on strict surveillance. We are going to investigate the mayor’s savings claims and are very curious how much the move actually cost.”