Mayor Sadiq Khan has announced a new pilot scheme which will see ten sites owned by Transport for London released to small and medium-sized builders.
The ‘Small Sites, Small Builders’ scheme is part of the Mayor’s efforts to boost housebuilding in the capital, including the supply of “genuinely affordable” homes.
It will see TfL release ten sites across the capital, with a total capacity of 111 homes, including two which will be reserved for community-led housing groups to bid for. Of the 111 homes to be built, 76 units – 68 per cent – will be affordable.
Mayor Khan said: “For far too long, London’s housing market has been over-reliant on large developers building the majority of our homes on large brownfield sites.
“The number of small sites coming forward has halved in the last decade, and we have lost almost a third of all small and medium-sized homebuilders operating in the capital.
“Through my new small sites programme, I want to make more public land available to help contribute not only to tackling the housing crisis in London, but also to reinvigorating our small and medium-sized homebuilding sector.”
Graeme Craig, Director of Commercial Development at Transport for London, added: “As one of the biggest landowners in London we’re in an ideal position to help provide the homes that London desperately needs, deliver genuinely affordable homes and generate revenue to reinvest in the transport network.
“We’re excited to be working with the Mayor to make our smaller sites available to small and medium size developers, housing associations and community-led organisations and these ten, at locations across London, are the first of a number of small sites that we’ll be bringing to market.”
Today’s announcement has been welcomed by the Federation of Master Builders London whose director, Barry Mortimer, said: “Research by the FMB shows that a lack of available and viable land is the main barrier to small builders delivering more new homes.
“Indeed, over half of SME house builders believe that the number of small sites available is decreasing.
“We therefore welcome this move by the Mayor of London, which will help bring forward a small number of small sites across the capital and give SME builders the land they are crying out for.
“This is a step in the right direction but if we are to address London’s housing shortage, we need many more of these initiatives going forward.”
News that two of the largest sites, Christchurch Road in Lambeth and Cable Street in Tower Hamlets, are to be reserved for community development has been welcomed by Citizens UK which has long-campaigned for more community land trust homes.
Father Richard Springer, London Citizens leader and Parish Priest, St George-in-the-East, said: “We are very excited about this terrific news.
“Members of the local churches, mosques and schools have been campaigning together for these much needed genuinely and permanently affordable community land trust homes.
“This will mean that families in this neighbourhood can stay together.
“It will make a huge difference to people who live around Cable Street as well as undoubtedly on the south London site in Christchurch Road. This shows what is possible when local communities organise and make their voices heard.”
The 10 sites are:
|Acres||Borough||Contract||Affordable Required||Potential Homes||Affordable Units||Private Units|
|Bridge View||0.13||Hammersmith & Fulham||Freehold||0%||4||0||4|
|Cable Street||0.76||Tower Hamlets||Leasehold||100%||42||42||0|
|Portree Street||0.08||Tower Hamlets||Leasehold||0%||8||0||8|