Highlights from the James Murray breakfast briefing

Turley was delighted to host Deputy Mayor for Housing and Residential Development, James Murray, for breakfast yesterday at Fortnum & Mason, alongside Belgrave Communications.

James Murray Breakfast Briefing

Coming exactly one year after our first breakfast discussion with the Deputy Mayor, we were joined by clients and friends from across the capital keen to hear James’ thoughts on the newly published London Plan.

James was introduced by Turley’s Sarah Bevan, who highlighted that the London Plan represents a step change in ambition for housing development, but also raises practical challenges about the scale of delivery required.

James Murray Breakfast Briefing

A range of key points were made by James, including:

  • The housing targets in the London Plan are stretching and the Mayor has emphasised they must be delivered with a strategic 50% affordable housing target and without using Green Belt land.
  • However, capacity for 65,000 homes per year has been identified and the GLA, boroughs and developers need to step up to deliver this ambitious objective.
  • Difficult decisions will need to be made about intensification, particularly on small sites and in outer London, but Londoners want to see the housing affordability problem tackled.
  • High quality design is an essential counterpart of increased density. The challenge to the development industry is to show how intensification can be delivered in built forms that are popular and attractive in every part of the city.
  • Planning policy and guidance needs to be produced in conjunction with the development industry to ensure it is effective.
  • The Mayor recognises that more intervention is needed to bring forward housebuilding, particularly investment in affordable housing and infrastructure including Crossrail 2, the Bakerloo line extension, new bridges and local bus services.
  • The London Housing Strategy sets out a more muscular role for the GLA in the land market, which they intend to use against both public and private landowners to increase capacity for housing delivery.

Turley has already undertaken detailed scrutiny of what the London Plan will mean for new development proposals across the capital, please contact Michael Lowndes to discuss.