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Nine London housing zones selected for first chunk of £400m funding

The Greater London Authority has revealed the first nine of 20 new housing zones that will, together, deliver 50,000 new homes in the capital over the next 10 years.

The nine zones will receive a total of £262m of funding for 52 individual schemes that will see 28,000 homes built.

Of these, just over 9,000 will be for affordable rent or shared ownership, with the remainder a mix of outright sale or private rented homes.

The remaining 11 zones will be revealed before the end of the summer, with six of these expected to be in place before the period of purdah begins ahead of May’s general election.

The zones include a combination of schemes already in various stages of planning, and others that have been devised to take advantage of the new funding.

The Mayor of London’s office estimates that of the 28,000 new homes being delivered in the nine zones announced, 8,000 would not have been possible without the funding, while the rest have been “accelerated”.

The £400m of government money available across the 20 zones will be used to develop infrastructure within and around the housing zones, as well as the new homes themselves.

Several of the nine initial schemes, including those in Greenwich and Ealing (see below), are located close to Crossrail or Crossrail 2 stations.

Half of government’s funding for the zones has come from the GLA, and half from the Treasury, although the funding is designed to be a recyclable investment rather than a grant.

The Treasury expects its full investment to be recoverable.

The rest of the financing for the zones, the first nine of which have a total value of £9.4bn, is expected to come from the private sector.

Deputy mayor for housing Richard Blakeway described the funding as a “lever with which to energise the market”.

More than half of the zones have confirmed development partners, including local authorities, housing associations and developers, although Mr Blakeway said there were a number of sites yet to finalise partners.

Peabody is development partner for both Abbey Wood zones, while Swan Housing will work with Barking and Dagenham council on Barking Town Centre.

Harrow council will work with Origin Housing, the Hyde Group and Land Securities, while Renewal will develop the New Bermondsey zone, and Catalyst Housing Group will partner with Ealing council in Southall.

Housing Zones

Abbey Wood, Plumstead and Thamesmead

·         1,512 homes to be delivered

·         GLA funding allocation of £27.8m

·         Total value of £367.8m

Abbey Wood and South Thamesmead

·         1,314 homes to be delivered

·         GLA funding allocation of £54.8m

·         Total value of £346.8m

Barking Town Centre

·         2,295 homes to be delivered

·         GLA funding allocation of £42.3m

·         Total value of £375m 

Clapham Junction to Battersea Riverside

·         5,356 homes to be delivered

·         GLA funding allocation of £12.4m

·         Total value of £1.4bn

Heart of Harrow

·         5,294 homes to be delivered

·         GLA funding allocation of £31.4m

·         Total value of £1.8bn

Hounslow Town Centre

·         3,478 homes to be delivered

·         GLA funding allocation of £18.5m

·         Total value of £1.3bn

New Bermondsey

·         2,372 homes to be delivered

·         GLA funding of £20m

·         Total value of £1bn

Southall

·         4,345 homes to be delivered

·         GLA funding of £20.1m

·         Total value of £1.8bn

Tottenham

·         1,956 homes to be delivered

·         GLA funding of £44.1m

·         Total value of £2bn

 

The majority of the schemes in the programme have planning performance agreements - a device to provide greater transparency in determining planning for large or complex applications already in place.

Mr Blakeway said he had talked to individual councils about how to get PPAs for every zone ahead of the allocation of funding.

“Having a PPA set out in the agreements will give more planning certainty,” he said. “[It means] applications will be delivered within a statutory timetable.”

Local authorities submitted a total of 25 proposals for housing zones by the bid deadline at the end of September 2014.

The programme sits alongside a national housing zones project, run by the Department for Communities and Local Government.

Last month, the government revealed the 29-strong shortlist that are competing to become one of 10 national housing zones, sharing £200m of funding.

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