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NSIP should include residential developments - BPF

Words: Laura Edgar

To help alleviate the housing crisis, the British Property Federation (BPF) is urging the government to allow new residential schemes to be delivered through the quick Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs) programme.

At ‘Size and Delivery Matters’, a BPF event held today, delegates listened to discussion on how the recently reviewed NSIP regime has helped to unlock business and commercial opportunities, including the £2.3 billion London Paramount scheme, expected to create more than £25,000 jobs. It could, they argued, also be used to unlock mixed-use schemes.

Director at planning consultancy Quod John Rhodes said: “It is mad that government wants to exclude residential from the regime. If the greatest national need is for more housing, sooner or later a braver government is going to have to include a full range of land-uses if it is to deliver.”

Recent changes made to the NSIP regime include allowing business and commercial applications to be fast-tracked, with the BPF saying the system is working well, successfully getting a variety of projects, including commercial, off the ground.

“However, if we are to see it really make an impact we would like to see government include a provision for housing. Schemes are ineligible for the process if they contain even a few homes, and we urge government to reconsider this if it wants to encourage large-scale regeneration across our towns and cities,” explained Ghislaine Halpenny, assistant director at the BPF.