Greg Hill, Deputy Chief Executive at Hill, comments:
“It is refreshing to see Sadiq Khan taking the housing crisis by the horns with his first draft London Plan. At a time when demand in the Capital outweighs supply, removing outdated and complicated constraints around density guidelines is encouraging and welcome. It is therefore vital local authorities support this ambition and work with the housebuilding community to deliver well-designed schemes of appropriate density in the right locations.
“It is also good to see the Mayor offering private developers a fast-track route to planning permission if they meet a minimum of 35% affordable homes. However, with Khan’s ambition for all new homes built in London to be 50% affordable there needs to be greater emphasis placed on partnerships between the private and public sector. We have a strong track record of working with local authorities and housing associations in London, so can confidently say that establishing greater trust and partnerships between these sectors must also be an ongoing priority of the Mayor. The housebuilding sector’s commercial skill and specialism in unlocking land for best use can be of huge benefit to local councils. Establishing partnerships where land is strategically reviewed and assessed, its best use identified and then reutilised for housing and mixed-use community facilities is key if we are to overcome our housing crisis.
“Of course, building enough homes to meet Khan’s ambitious targets requires more than just Government support and successful partnerships. Attracting and retaining the right talent and resource to build the homes is crucial. Housebuilding must be prioritised as part of Brexit negotiations on migration and workers’ rights. If we don’t have the people, we can’t build the homes!”