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Report: Outer London boroughs failing to build

Words: Laura Edgar
Not enough housing being built in London / Shutterstock_667930339

Research by business organisation London First suggests that the capital’s outer boroughs are not building enough homes and as a result are contributing to London’s housing shortage.

Using the proposals for calculating local housing need announced in September by communities secretary Sajid Javid and the government’s housing data, the group said it found that boroughs in zones 5-6 have projects to construct 17 per cent of the homes that need to be built this year.

Zones 1-4 started the year well, according to the study, but are set to provide only 80 per cent of the homes they need to build this year.

Overall, London is projected to complete 63 per cent of the homes it needs in 2017.

According to the proposed methodology, zones 1-4 now need to be building 53,000 homes a year, while zones 5-6 need to deliver 19,000. London needs 72,000 homes a year, rather than the 49,000 stated in the current London Plan, said the group.

Naomi Smith, executive director of campaigns at London First, said: “These new figures are deeply worrying. The housing crisis is getting worse, not better. London is falling far short in providing the homes it needs. The mayor and the government must do more to drive construction in the city, and further devolution of powers to City Hall may be needed to make this happen.”

For Smith, this isn’t just a political issue: she believes the lack of building in zones 5 and 6 is “choking” London, pushing up prices and squeezing young, productive workers out of the city.

“The housing crisis is one of the most serious challenges facing business, preventing firms from recruiting the talent they need to grow and succeed. Business could provide thousands of additional jobs each year if the cost of housing was more manageable.”

Image credit | Shutterstock