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Finance, not planning, is a block to house building

Monday, 21 November 2011 12:17

In response to the Government’s new housing strategy [1], Neil Sinden, Director of Policy and Campaigns for the Campaign to Protect Rural England, says:

“We welcome today’s announcement, which acknowledges that it is not the planning system that has been constraining house building, but a lack of finance. Now that the Government has recognised this fact, we hope it will feed into the review of their proposed planning reforms. This should result in reforms that allow the planning system to deliver both truly sustainable new housing, and better protections for the ordinary countryside that is currently under threat.

“This strategy is the first step in rethinking our approach to housing, and in particular considering how we can get more out of the existing stock as well as increasing the supply of affordable homes. CPRE awaits with interest further detail on the Government's proposals for 'locally planned large scale development'. This idea must not be allowed to turn into another eco-towns disaster, with the environment and communities set to lose out as central Government and developers force through projects in poorly thought out locations.

“The potential of the planning system to support local communities in identifying sites for sustainable housing development must be harnessed. This means treating reuse of previously-developed land, of which there is enough to deliver 1.5m new homes, as an absolute priority. Equally crucial in delivering a planning system fit for the 21st century is ensuring that new housing development includes integration with and improvement of existing sustainable transport networks, efficient use of resources, and delivering the best quality design possible.”

End

Notes to Editors
[1] Department for Communities and Local Government, New strategy to deliver homes and strengthen the economy, 21 November 2011 http://www.communities.gov.uk/news/newsroom/2033731

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