Croydon council has given planning consent to a 389,000ft2 “public service delivery hub” in its town centre

The scheme is one of the first to emerge from a £450m joint venture between the council and John Laing, the UK’s first local authority asset-backed vehicle, which is designed to offer councils a bigger share of development profits on sites they own. Work is expected to start in early 2010, subject to Greater London Authority approval.