Reforming the planning laws wont solve the Housing Crisis say Lib Dems
Originally published by East Suffolk Liberal Democrats
Lib Dems say 'we don't need rhetoric' as thousands of planning applications are sitting there without a brick being laid.
"Build, Build Build" says Johnson who dismisses opposition to planning reforms as "nimbyism"
"Developers to be permitted to build on top of existing blocks of flats up to 5 storeys" says Baroness Jenny Randerson
The Government have announced a planning 'revolution' that will force local authorities to allocate land for developments that will then not have to go through the full planning process. Under the new process, land will be designated in one of three zoning categories: 'for growth, for renewal or for protection'.
In the first two categories there will be a new legal 'permission in principle' approach for new buildings, it is understood. Areas of outstanding natural beauty and the green belt will come under the protection category where most new buildings will be automatically banned.
The reforms will be published in a paper entitled Planning for the Future and follow an extension of permitted development rights announced earlier this summer.
Critics including the RIBA, the Local Government Association and the charity Shelter have already said that the move would lead to poor-quality new houses being built in areas without adequate public services and would lessen democratic accountability.
Reported in the Architects Journal, RIBA President Alan Jones said. 'deregulation would not deliver new homes and called for the government to 'urgently reconsider'.
Baroness Jenny Randerson said: "I have spoken out in the Lords against Conservative Government regulations which will allow developers to build on top of existing blocks of flats up to 5 storeys. We had 5 Lib Dem speakers all fiercely opposed to this. This is going to be a major issue for local planning authorities".
LGA Liberal Democrat Group Leader Councillor Howard Sykes said: "The prime minister has promised 'the most radical reforms of our planning system since the end of the Second World War'. Not again please. Will the Government wake up to the FACT that councils aren't the problem with getting homes built nor is the planning system?
He added: "How many times do we have to say that councils approve nine in 10 applications? The Government conveniently forgets the thousands of planning applications that are sitting there without a brick being laid. Hundreds of thousands of homes lay unbuilt. We need powers to force developers to build these out. Don't demonise us and point the finger again at local government blaming us. We don't need rhetoric - we need partnership".
Liberal Democrat MHCLG Spokesperson Tim Farron MP added:
"The announcement to reform England's planning laws today reveals that once again Ministers are not serious about solving the housing crisis. It is not the lack of planning permission that prevents new, genuinely affordable, homes being built, but this Government's refusal to properly invest in social housing.
"Rather than tinkering with planning laws, what Robert Jenrick should be doing is unveiling a huge housebuilding program of social homes for rent. We have already lost thousands of social rented homes as a result of the Government's permitted developed changes to date.
"The Liberal Democrats want to see 100,000 new social homes to be built every year, as well as giving local authorities the ability to suspend the right to buy in their own areas, so that we can finally start tackling the crisis that's crippling the UK's housing market."
Lib Dem Lords speak out against planning changes Baroness Jenny Randerson ". A link to the speech can be found here:
Architects Journal: Sweeping reforms will give new schemes 'automatic' planning permission 3 AUGUST, 2020 BY WILL HURST