The All-Party Parliamentary Group on London’s Planning and Built Environment met on 31 October. David Taylor, editor of the NLA’s New London Quarterly, reports.
London must patch up its relationship with the public over so-called affordable housing by defining its parameters more realistically. But City Hall is aiming to help address quality and the housing shortfall across the capital through more intervention over land assembly, a commitment to tackling supply with new methods of construction across many tenures and a new name-and-shame database on rogue landlords.
Those were some of the key issues to emerge from the recent meeting of the APPG for London’s Planning and Built Environment at Portcullis House.
Chair Rupa Huq, MP for Ealing Central and Acton, introduced the session on how we can deliver genuine high quality homes for Londoners and address a crisis over affordable provision.
Deputy mayor for housing and residential development James Murray said that there had been ‘remarkably few’ opportunities to tighten up the speed of getting the new draft London Plan into place, but that it is expected on 29 November. The story of London over the last two decades, though, was of a 40% increase in jobs, 25% climb in population and 15% in housing supply. ‘It has been a story of jobs and economic success, but housing failure’, he said. ‘It simply hasn’t kept up with demand’. There is an ‘affordability gulf’ in what we are building, and although traditional housebuilders have a large role to play they tend to focus on the high-end homes for sale. London needs some 66,000 homes a year, according to new GLA figures, with 2/3 of them having to be affordable.