Housing and the Draft London Plan

MQT on 2017-12-14
Session date: 
December 14, 2017
Question By: 
Peter Whittle
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


I note that your Draft London Plan proposes ripping up existing planning rules and calls on homebuilders to develop sites at higher housing densities to substantially increase housing capacity in the capital. This will in my view inevitably lead to the loss of local character in many areas, yet I note that nowhere do you mention why we need to build 65,000 new homes a year in London. Why do you think London needs all these new homes each and every year?


Answer for Housing and the Draft London Plan

Answer for Housing and the Draft London Plan

Answered By: 
The Mayor

London's population is increasing. However, growth per se is not a bad thing. It is growth without adequate planning that is the problem.

The 2017 London Strategic Housing Market Assessment - a fundamental part of the evidence base behind the draft London Plan -  sets out a comprehensive analysis of London's housing requirement and shows that London needs 66,000 new homes a year. This requirement takes account of projected household growth and the number of households who already lack a suitable home of their own.

It is important to recognise what is driving population increase in London. We have a thriving economy, which has created almost 90,000 extra jobs a year in the last two decades. This has attracted more people to London, with the population rising by 1.8 million over the same period.

But housebuilding has simply not kept up - over the last twenty years, the number of jobs in London has grown by 40%, the number of people by 25%, but the number of homes by only 15%.

I have published an ambitious and bold draft new London Plan which seeks to meet London's housing need. It provides a more effective planning framework for boroughs to substantially increase both overall and affordable housing provision. It ensures we make the best use of available land without encroaching on designated open space and by ensuring there is sufficient space available for other essential land uses.