In a report relevant to this afternoon's Community and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committe a new report by Sian Berry, Green Party Assembly Member and Mayoral candidate reveals London is set to have lost more than 13,500 social and council homes in estate redevelopment schemes since 2003 if currently approved projects are completed.
The report, Estate redevelopment in London, reveals that completed demolition schemes on sites with existing social housing have led to the net loss of 6,748 social and council homes since 2003. It also shows that a further 6,791 will be lost if currently approved schemes go ahead.
redevelopment schemes funded by the Mayor now cannot involve demolition
without residents approving schemes via a ballot. This is part of a new
policy finally introduced by the Mayor in July 2018, after a long
campaign from estate residents and Sian Berry.
Today’s report reveals that this policy has yet to take full effect. It also describes how the losses have been worsened by the Mayor quietly agreeing to fund dozens of schemes in the months ahead of the new ballot policy coming into force. This allowed many thousands of potential home demolitions to slip under the wire of new rules.
The new research found that 1,430 social rented homes will be demolished and not replaced in schemes given planning permission since April 2018 alone.
Sian Berry AM said:
London simply cannot afford to lose 13,539 council and housing association homes through demolition. Waiting lists of Londoners in urgent need of housing continue to grow and people are more squeezed than ever by the housing crisis.
My research today shows we have already lost thousands of social housing homes, and that thousands more are under imminent threat. Demolishing estates in this way not only reduces the amount of housing for families in need, it also breaks up communities at the heart of life in the city.
The Mayor’s decision to sign off on dozens of redevelopment schemes in 2018, allowing them to dodge incoming rules for resident ballots, has prolonged the damage to our city. I have found that the new ballot policy is not yet making a significant impact on schemes that have reached the planning stage as a result.
And now estates are under even more threat from the Government’s proposed new national planning rules. These would force councils to define whole areas for rapid or automatic planning approval and do not give a single mention to the rights of people already living in these areas to have a say.
Key findings from the report 'Estate Redevelopment in London: Have things improved under the current Mayor?, are shown in the tables below.
Total impact of London estate redevelopment schemes: -13,539.
A map showing boroughs' net loss of social housing in estate redevelopment schemes (all schemes on sites with existing social housing) granted planning permission since 2003, overall.
Total impact of completed schemes: -6,748.
A map showing boroughs' net loss of social rented housing in estate redevelopment schemes granted planning permission since 2003, where construction has been completed.
Total impact of schemes in the pipeline: -6,791.
A map of boroughs set to lose social rented homes in estate redevelopment schemes granted planning permission since 2003, for which construction has not started, or has begun and not yet been completed: