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Labour unveils plans for new towns

The Labour Party has committed to building 1.5m new homes across the country over the next parliament.

Shadow Housing Secretary Angela Rayner used a speech at the UK Real Estate Investment and Infrastructure Forum in Leeds yesterday to state that Labour would “back developers who deliver.”

Rayner said Labour’s housing plans include a series of new towns with high standards for design, quality, affordable homes, green space and infrastructure.
This includes establishing a New Town Commission within six months of a Labour government coming into power, which will prioritise the delivery of housing and infrastructure development to support new communities.


New developments would also include 40% affordable housing.

Commenting on the policy, Lawrence Turner director of planning consultancy Boyer, said: “As past Governments have shown, building 300,000 homes per year is a monumental task, but it is one that is desperately needed to address the severe shortage of housing that has been a growing problem for many years.”

He warned there are challenges, adding: “The political hurdles that come with development on the edge of settlements and the release of Green Belt, is something that has been very difficult for the incumbent Government to deliver. 

“Conservative voters, who tend to live and oppose development in these areas, have been a significant roadblock to progress for the Government over the last 14 years. The decision by

Labour to reclassify low-quality areas of Green Belt land for development, known as Grey Belt, is a controversial move that will likely face opposition from environmental groups and local residents. However, it is a necessary first step to release the most sustainably located land for much-needed housing. Tough decisions like this will be crucial if Labour is to meet its ambitious housing targets.

“The reintroduction of housing targets in England and reforms to the planning system are welcomed and are an important component of any plan to address the housing crisis. Without mandatory housing targets and a streamlined planning process, it will be impossible to deliver 300,000 homes per year.”

He said it is vital that Labour works with the private sector to fund the development of these new towns. While the Government can provide support and incentives for developers to build affordable housing, ultimately it will be private investment that drives the growth of new communities.

He said: “By creating a positive environment for developers and ensuring that land values reflect the need to build affordable housing, New Towns can make significant progress in addressing the housing crisis.”

  • Glenn Taylor

    here here, this is the first time a reason to vote Labour for me, our industry has been shafted by Gove and his soft withdrawal of housing target numbers giving the planning authorities reason to continue to sit on there hands and ride bikes all day. I wonder if Labour will send people back to work.
    I was surprised and refreshed to read this and I hope it is true.

  • icon

    One trouble is the Labour Paymasters - The Unions will ensure that everything is blocked and down tools at every opportunity


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