Mayor puts Londoners first in new estate regeneration guide
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has today set out his plans to put local people at the heart of estate regeneration in the capital.
The Mayor has published a draft good practice guide, which recommends that Londoners must be involved at an early stage to help shape any proposals by boroughs and housing associations for estate regeneration. The draft guidelines, which have been developed with councils, housing associations and residents’ groups in recent months, recommends full rights for tenants to be rehoused on newly regenerated estates as well as a fair deal for leaseholders.
The Mayor has also set out his expectation that demolition and rebuilding should only go ahead after other ways of achieving the aim of regeneration have been considered, and where there is no loss of social housing.
The guidelines, which will be consulted on widely for three months, will be included in the conditions for future City Hall funding for new estate regeneration projects. The new standards will also be applied through the planning system where possible, as well as acting as a benchmark for boroughs, developers and housing associations to follow, even if the regeneration schemes do not involve the Mayor.
The good practice guide seeks to provide reassurance to Londoners living on housing estates that a guaranteed set of minimum standards should apply to the way that they are treated and consulted upon for any new estate regeneration scheme.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “When done well, regeneration can be a positive way of protecting and improving housing estates in our great city. It offers the chance to improve the quality of housing and nearby public space, as well as building more and new affordable homes.
“Many councils are developing good practice in examples of estate regenerations across the capital – through this guide, I want to bring together the approaches that have worked well.
“I hope this guide will help to show that when local residents are involved from the start, and when key principles are followed, estate regeneration can help us build a city for all Londoners.”
Philip Glanville, Mayor of Hackney, said: “I’m proud that in Hackney we’re already building nearly 9,000 modern, high-quality homes through estate regeneration – providing vital new homes for existing tenants, expanding the supply of council housing and helping renters being priced out of our city with options for shared ownership.
“We’ve shown by putting local people at the heart of regeneration plans from day one, we can build new developments with the support of everyone. But it’s vital that across the capital residents have the same guarantees – more genuinely affordable housing, the right to move into new properties at the same type of rent, real options for leaseholders to stay, access to independent advice and a fair compensation deal for the disruption and upheaval development causes.
“I’m delighted that by introducing this new guidance, Sadiq Khan will put those guarantees in place and ensure that as we unleash a new generation of housebuilding, we protect the diverse, mixed communities that make London’s culture and economy tick.”
Councillor Julian Bell, leader of Ealing Council, said: “I share the Mayor’s belief that people not buildings should be at the heart of estate regeneration plans. The Mayor’s new guide sets clear standards for the housing sector and provides a commitment to estate residents that their needs will be prioritised.
“In Ealing we, like other boroughs, are trying to increase the housing supply across a mix of tenures, including through major regeneration projects on several of our estates. We have learnt that when you include the community in the decision making process your regeneration plans are significantly improved and you are able to build the spirit of that community into your future plans.”
Sir Steve Bullock, executive member for housing at London Councils, said: “Boroughs have done and continue to do excellent work in carrying out regeneration programmes across London to create decent, fit-for-purpose homes for new and existing communities.
“We know housing supply in our city falls far short of demand and we are in desperate need of more homes of a range of tenures to meet the requirements of all Londoners.
“Upgrading our existing stock and ensuring as many empty properties as possible are brought back into use is a key issue in terms of tackling our growing housing crisis and London Councils welcomes the Mayor’s support in ensuring the essential work being carried out by boroughs can continue.”
A link to the good practice guide can be found here: https://www.london.gov.uk/what-we-do/housing-and-land/improving-quality/good-practice-guide-estate-regeneration