It is moving to the former Commonwealth Institute, a 1960s Grade II-listed building, and will be open from 2016. Free entry means the museum can be included in the government's VAT refund scheme and can reclaim VAT on purchase costs relating to their collection, including storage and conservation, and buildings.
According to the Museums Association, visitor numbers are forecast to double to more than 650,000 in the first year after the museum relocates.
As with most other museums and galleries offering free entry to permanent collections, the Design Museum will charge for temporary exhibitions, with six or seven likely to be held each year.
The new premises will give the museum three times more space than in its current location at Shad Thames and bring it close to the Kensington museums area of the V&A, Science and Natural History museums.
The Design Museum Collection is made up of over 3000 objects that range from the early Modernism of the 1900s to contemporary design.