Berkeley’s Chairman calls for greater industry collaboration

With fresh data revealing the scale of the housing shortage, London’s biggest private housebuilder has called on the industry and the boroughs to work with the Mayor and together deliver 66,000 homes a year in the capital.

“If we really want to build homes for all Londoners, the private and the public sectors have got to collaborate,” said Tony Pidgley CBE, Chairman of the Berkeley Group. “There is a solution if we all work together.”

“Housebuilding is painfully slow, not because of build out rates or a skills shortage but because of the uncertainty and division.”

“The reality is that most development in London involves complex, brownfield land which requires a huge amount of time, expertise and capital. But in our experience, the Mayor is open for business and prepared to fast-track sites that achieve the threshold of 35% affordable housing, which has to be the priority.”

“The Berkeley Group alone has land without planning permission that can deliver 20,000 more homes if we could get on with the job. To achieve this, we urge the Government to reform the Community Infrastructure Levy and only apply CIL to sites with fewer than 100 homes. On larger developments, Section 106 agreements are a much better way to deliver local infrastructure and affordable homes.”

Tony Pidgley continued, “We will work within the Mayor’s policy because ultimately we all want the same thing – a National Park city where anyone can get on the housing ladder and invest their future in London. If we work in a spirit of real cooperation, these derelict sites can be turned into communities.”

This call to action comes as the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, starts to release £1.7bn of public funding in a bid to accelerate affordable housing delivery across the capital.

Ahead of the expected publication of the draft London Plan at the end of November, the Mayor has published draft housing targets for London’s boroughs increasing the overall target to 66,000 homes a year, from the current annual target of 49,000 homes.

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