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07/03/2016

House building could create 15,000 jobs in Thames Valley

Words: Laura Edgar
Berkshire

A “major” house building programme could create new Thames Valley jobs and generate a £12 billion construction boom, according to research by planning consultancy Nathaniel Lichfield and Partners (NLP).

The Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA), which includes South Buckinghamshire, undertaken for the Berkshire authorities and Thames Valley Berkshire Local Enterprise Partnership (TVBLEP), has 

New SHMA house building across TVBLEP compared to recent delivery (taken from the report)
West BerkshireNew OAN (Objectively Assessed Need): 665 new homes2013/2014: 440 new homes were built
ReadingOAN: 6992013/14: 360
WokinghamOAN:  8562013/14: 490
Bracknell ForestOAN: 6352013/14: 310

RBWM (Royal Borough

of Windsor & Maidenhead)

OAN: 7122013/14: 360
SloughOAN: 9272013/14: 400
South BucksOAN: 3762013/14: 150

concluded that almost 85,000 homes are needed in the area.

It states that many towns in the east of Berkshire will need to achieve house building rates “in excess 200 per cent” of their existing targets.

NLP published its research to coincide with the SHMA. It highlights, how the increased levels of house building would deliver a major economic boost to the area. NLP says its analysis concludes that if these targets were met, 15,000 jobs could be created, which would in turn “lead to a £12.4 billion construction boost”.

At the same time, it would increase the “overall economic output of the area by £2.4 billion”.

Daniel Lampard, senior director and head of NLP’s Thames Valley office in Reading, said: “We have seen a sharp fall in the number of new homes being built in recent years and with population expected to rise we need a new era of house building in the area.

“Our research shows that the economic benefits on offer for increasing levels of house building activity are significant. Given the scale of the economic benefits at stake it is critical that the issues currently constraining supply are resolved as these will only compound over time.”

The research also states that hitting the SHMA housing targets could lead to almost £3 billion more expenditure by the new residents and provide a New Homes Bonus of over £1 billion for local councils.

The SHMA, released in February, is a requirement of the new planning system and takes into account forecast population and employment growth across the TVBLEP area.

Image credit | Shuttershock

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