With the Government’s commitment to increasing housing delivery and the Housing and Planning Bill still passing through Parliament, we look forward to a busy year in 2016.
We expect a raft of technical consultations on detailed aspects of the Bill’s proposals and draft secondary legislation.
The new emphasis on low cost market and starter homes will change conversations between developers and local authorities on affordable housing - we anticipate tension ahead where some authorities still seek the delivery of affordable and social rented units to meet their housing needs. Scrutinising development viability will remain high on the agenda and the outcome of the review of CIL and its controversial relationship with s106 agreements will be keenly awaited.
The government has started nibbling at the edges of green belt policy with the proposed loosening of tests for development of brownfield sites in the green belt. Clamour for a wholesale review of the purpose of the green belt will no doubt continue.
Those investing in office to residential will be relieved by the commitment to make the change permanent and provide more time for implementation of prior approval. The detail of the government’s proposal to allow demolition of existing offices and construction of new homes in their place by way of permitted development is awaited and will present opportunities for many in the market.”
Claire Fallows is a partner at Charles Russell Speechlys