Hampstead Heath and Burgh House among potential sites for new housing
PUBLISHED: 17:47 03 February 2016 | UPDATED: 11:22 04 February 2016
Primary schools, historic buildings, allotments and Hampstead Heath are among the publicly owned Camden sites that have been identified by the Mayor’s office as potential areas for housing development.
The London Land Commission was set up to identify plots of brownfield land suitable for development owned by public bodies including Mayor of London, Government departments, London boroughs, Transport for London and the NHS in a “Domesday Book”.
The Commission identified 44,000 sites, which it believed could be converted into a minimum of 130,000 homes.
The 1,148 sites identified in Camden include the Fitzroy Park and Branch Hill allotments; Keats Community Library, Burgh House and Lauderdale House; Parliament Hill, William Ellis and Camden schools; Kentish Town City Farm; and parts of Hampstead Heath.
Borough-owned council housing and London Underground and Overground stations were also earmarked as having potential for redevelopment.
The Commission is chaired by Boris Johnson and Housing and Planning Minister Brandon Lewis.
Boris Johnson MP, said: “For far too long, land owned by public bodies has lain dormant or sold off with no benefit to the capital. That simply must not be allowed to happen and we must build on the work done at City Hall in releasing land for development.
“The Commission will be absolutely vital in co-ordinating all public bodies to ensure we squeeze every drop of developable land possible to build the homes we need for hard-working Londoners.”
The sites will now be analysed by City Hall to determine the availability of the land and accelerate the release of surplus land for housing.
Public bodies will be encouraged to market the land for housing rather than selling with no obligations and will identify areas to group together potential plots to create better regeneration sites across London.
Mayor Sir Steve Bullock, London Councils’ Executive member for housing, said: “Publishing the register, which London boroughs have contributed towards, is a good starting point that will allow public sector organisations in the capital to take a more strategic approach to the use of their land, especially where adjacent sites are owned by different public landowners.
“Working together and using land more creatively is vital in order to help tackle the housing crisis and deliver an increase in affordable homes for Londoners.”
John Stewart, Director of Economic Affairs at the House Builders Federation, said: “There is an acute need for much higher levels of home building in London, and this can only be addressed if sufficient land is made available for development.
“The public land register is a valuable first step and will be welcomed by house builders in London. The next step must be to translate these sites into real-life development opportunities which will boost housing supply in the capital, providing huge social and economic benefits to Londoners.”