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Crystal Palace Park's future back on the agenda

PUBLISHED: 15:27 04 June 2015 | UPDATED: 15:33 04 June 2015

Crystal Palace Park

Crystal Palace Park

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New hopes for park after uncertainty of ZRG's £500m palace rebuild plan

The long-term future of Crystal Palace Park is once again under discussion.

Plans for its future were put on hold after Bromley Council and developer ZhongRong Group (ZRG) failed to agree on proposals to rebuild the famous Crystal Palace.

In 2013, ZRG and London Mayor Boris Johnson announced plans to build a £500m replica of the palace in the park, which is managed by the council. The pair entered into an exclusivity agreement but on February 1 - after 16 months - had failed to reach an agreement.

A new regeneration and management plan has been announced by the council, with its leader, Stephen Carr, Leader of Bromley Council saying: “We have been working alongside local residents for many years now and this proposal has always been part of our vision.

“There are many considerations which need to be examined and naturally, finance will be part of this. The Masterplan proposals will need to be carefully assessed to ensure that a viable plan comes forward.

“Improving and sustaining this much loved park remains at the very heart of what we are looking to do and the long term governance proposals are part of this.”

The news has been welcomed by community representatives.

Martin Tempia, chair of the Crystal Palace Park Community Stakeholder Group, said, “This is very good news for the Park. After the uncertainty caused by the ZhongRong proposal, we now have the opportunity to plan for its future.

“The fact that Bromley have agreed to a new form of independent governance for the park and provided funds to establish it, is a recognition of the work of community organisations and other stakeholders. They have shown their ability to undertake and deliver regeneration projects in the Park and they will play a leading role in its future.”

The announcement follows the completion of the first round of community grant fund applications which are now being assessed, with grants of up to £20,000 available for community or resident groups to deliver specific projects and activities in the park.

This plan hopes to build on the momentum established by the £2.4million improvements to the park which are being funded in partnership with the Mayor of London.

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