It’s indisputable that the London property market has become a bank vault for investors in the UK and overseas, while Londoners who live, work and send their children to school in the city are increasingly priced out.
Both mayoral frontrunners, Zac Goldsmith and Sadiq Khan, are looking to address this with policies ensuring a large proportion of new homes built in the city are offered to Londoners ahead of investors.
But affordability remains the biggest issue. Irrespective of the two candidates’ contrasting strategies on affordable housing, there are simply not enough homes being built.
There is enough land in London, including vast swathes in the east, to solve the housing crisis and reduce upwards pressure on prices, but it requires imagination.
The new Mayor will need to be more forceful in terms of pushing through large-scale redevelopment projects in central London, including being fearless in the use of CPOs as we did for the Olympics and Crossrail. As the latter has demonstrated, infrastructure is the key to unlocking sites.
There is land all over London that can be redeveloped; brownfield sites such as unused offices, space above high street shops, along railway lines, sites owned by TfL.
The new Mayor must make these sites viable so developers can produce more homes, or regardless of their policies on affordable housing and giving Londoners first refusal, prices will move further out of reach.
Edo Mapelli Mozzi is chief executive of Banda Property