Move Over Las Vegas! Consultants Propose F1-Suitable Street Track in London
A proposed F1 circuit at London's Royal Docks would take advantage of ExCeL London—an enormous events and exhibition center—which has recent motorsport experience.
London’s Formula E race has taken place at the ExCeL since 2021.
Proposals and concepts for a Formula 1 Grand Prix in London have occasionally reared their heads but have never been seriously developed.
A renovation of London’s Royal Docks could include a street circuit capable of hosting Formula 1 Grands Prix, according to a proposal from consultants working on a redevelopment of the district.
Dar and the LDN Collective, a consultancy and design group, are striving to turn the Royal Docks—located in the eastern reaches of the UK’s capital across from London City Airport—into a ‘globally-recognized waterfront destination with a focus on sports, leisure and entertainment.’
Under the group’s plan it wants to extend the width of the existing Royal Victoria and Albert Dock, which runs for two kilometers, in order to make space for wellness and community areas. These would be located above a temporary track surface, which can be uncovered, utilized and then covered up in a short space of time.
Floating modules capable of holding grandstands and other ancillaries required for a sporting event would be installed on the water, and repurposed for local community projects through the remainder of the year.
A tentative layout was proposed, which features an abundance of straights and chicanes, and also utilizes existing roads in the district. The proposed circuit would also take advantage of ExCeL London—an enormous events and exhibition center—which has recent motorsport experience.
London’s Formula E race has taken place at the ExCeL since 2021, and the innovative pits and paddock area, along with the start/finish line and a few corners, is located inside the large facility, with the remainder of the track winding its way around the complex.
The current plans remain in their infancy and any concrete proposal is understood to still be several years from reality—if indeed it stretches that far.
“We are excited to bring forward this vision which could do for the Royal Docks what the Olympics did for Stratford and the Lea Valley,” said LDN Collective CEO Max Farrell.
“By extending the promenade we are creating a flexible eventscape and by creating floating commercial uses we are making the proposal financially viable and deliverable, without the taxpayer footing the bill.
“We know that Formula 1 is interested in hosting a Grand Prix here and we have designed a track that meets all of their requirements and regulations.
“We have discussed the proposals with the GLA [Greater London Authority], who are developing a water strategy and planning framework with Newham Council, which we will align with.
“With or without F1, these proposals are transformational and would be a huge boost to London and the UK globally.”
Proposals and concepts for a Formula 1 Grand Prix in London have occasionally reared their heads but have never been seriously developed due to impractical plans in locations where the disruption would be too severe.
Formula 1 cars have occasionally reverberated in central London, most recently in 2017, when a stretch of Whitehall was shut as part of a demonstration run during the build-up to that year’s British GP.