Minor Alterations to the London Plan

Wednesday 10 February 2016, all day

Motion detail

“The Assembly notes the answers to the questions asked.

However, this Assembly has concerns about a number of the altered policies in the Minor Alterations to the London Plan, including those addressed below.

Housing Standards

This Assembly condemns the decision by Government to force London to abandon its housing standards through the planning system. These standards work for London, and London should have been able to keep them.

The GLA has a well-established and effective series of housing standards which are lauded for improving the condition of housing in the capital. Many of these are designed to be joined-up with other policies, such as on transport, health, and tackling and adapting to climate change, which all contribute to quality of life. The loss of these standards will undermine the ability of City Hall to secure high-quality housing that is spacious, saves Londoners money on their energy bills, and is better for the environment.

Car Parking

This Assembly is concerned by the potential introduction of minimum car parking standards, which would represent a radical departure from current policy and could result in developers being forced to provide more car parking than a scheme requires, reducing the construction of much-needed housing in the capital[1].

Air Quality

This Assembly highlights the finding by the independent planning inspector that the implementation of the car parking alterations will result in a predicted decrease in air quality[2]. Given London is already in breach of the Ambient Air Quality Directive[3], any further deterioration in air quality is unacceptable.

The inspector puts the onus on the Mayor to clearly demonstrate “through appropriate modelling and monitoring mechanisms” that mitigation measures outweigh the impact on air quality[4]. This Assembly calls on the Mayor to refrain from implementing the proposed alterations until this has been demonstrated.

These policies and the planning decisions they inform will have a major impact on London in coming years. Until there is a new London Plan, the decisions that are taken will lock London into a trajectory that is at odds with key goals of developing a sustainable city.”

 

[1] Outer London Commission. Fourth Report – Residential Parking Standards. May 2015: paragraph 4.4.14.

[2] MALP Inspector Report, para 51.

[3]UK government failing legal duty on air pollution, supreme court rules.” Guardian. 1 May 2013.

[4] MALP Inspector Report, para 52.