Thousands of new homes to be built on brownfield land
Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Central Government, Development
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Thousands of new homes will be built on unused and previously-developed land under government plans to make it easier to build on brownfield sites.
According to ministers, local authorities will play a "critical role" in bringing forward brownfield land and will be asked to put in place local development orders which can provide sites with outline planning permission to speed up the building of new homes.
This, the government says, could provide up to 200,000 permissions for new homes by 2020.
In addition, 20 new housing zones on brownfield land in London will benefit from £400 million funding from the government and the Greater London Authority. There will be £200m of additional government funding available for 10 zones outside London.
Speaking at Mansion House, Chancellor George Osborne said: “We have beautiful landscapes, and they too are part of the inheritance of the next generation. To preserve them, we must make other compromises. If we want to limit development on important green spaces, we have to remove all the obstacles that remain to development on brown field sites.
“Today we do that with these radical steps, putting local development orders on over 90% of brownfield sites that are suitable for housing. This urban planning revolution will mean that in effect development on these sites will be pre-approved – local authorities will be able to specify the type of housing. And it will mean planning permission for up to 200,000 new homes – while at the same time protecting our green spaces.”
The Chancellor went on to say: “I suspect there will be people who object to new building, even on the brownfields of our cities. But let me be clear.
“I will not stand by and allow this generation, many of whom have been fortunate enough to own their own home, to say to the next generation: we’re pulling up the property ladder behind us. So we will build the houses Britain needs so that more families can have the economic security that comes with home ownership.
“And today I will give the Bank of England the powers it needs over mortgages, so that Britain’s economic stability always comes first. And that is what our long term economic plan is delivering.”
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said: “We’re determined to make the very best use of derelict land and former industrial sites to provide the homes this country desperately needs in a way that protects our valued countryside.
"By ensuring commitments to housing development are in place early and having dedicated Housing Zones, building becomes, quicker and easier for homebuilders, businesses and councils.”
The British Property Federation has welcomed the government’s brownfield measures.
Liz Peace, BPF chief executive, said: “The measures announced last night have great potential, and will certainly be a boon to developers. The devil will be in the detail however, and we would like to know more about how the plans will be implemented. Will the LDOs be mandatory? What will happen is a local authority doesn’t apply them?
“We must also remember that we still need to explore other options if we are to deliver enough homes to meet the country’s needs. We need to look further at densification, and also at building on the green belt. The common misconception of the green belt is that it is first and foremost a planning policy, not an environmental designation. Building on both brown and Greenfield land is necessary if we are to tackle the housing crisis properly.”