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London Forum Updates

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Greg Barker to chair Sustainable Development Commission

Posted on: 16 November 2014 at 19:49:36
Boris Johnson has announced here that he has appointed Greg Barker, MP, as new Chairman of his London Sustainable Development Commission, and tasked him with helping the capital meet the environmental challenges posed by a population that is set to increase by 37 per cent to more than 11 million people by 2050.
London Forum expects that there should now be more focus on sustainable urban drainage, on addressing traffic congestion and air pollution and ensuring the required infrastructure is delivered. It is expected also that the Mayor's Infrastructure Delivery Board will take input from civic and amenity societies.

Housebuilding initiative on National Grid land

Posted on: 16 November 2014 at 19:41:02
A new partnership that is expected to create 14,000 new homes across London and the South East has been welcomed by Boris Johnson. National Grid and Berkeley Group have established a joint venture to develop major residential and mixed-use development schemes. Known as St William Homes LLP, the initiative brings together access to a significant portfolio of brownfield land owned by National Grid Property in key areas of housing need.
See more details here.

Can London build enough homes for 9m people? and Where?

Posted on: 5 November 2014 at 23:25:08
An article @CityAM points to a report by residential and commercial estate agent Stirling Ackroyd with a map of wards which are likely to have high, medium or low house building. The Outer London boroughs may need to increase densification to respond to the demand.

Will devolution to London happen?

Posted on: 5 November 2014 at 22:53:41
London Mayor Boris Johnson has admitted he has struggled to convince the Government that control of taxes like stamp duty should be devolved to City Hall as recently to Manchester - see  and as discussed at .

BBC London political editor Tim Donovan spoke to Mr Johnson, Minister for Cities, Greg Clark, and Mark Boleat, Corporation of London.
It seems that London is being asked to demonstrate what it would do with retained taxes and what return to the Treasury there would be before more devolution is likely.

Why Invest in Landscape?

Posted on: 5 November 2014 at 22:39:29
Further to the speech by Communities Minister Stephen Williams below, the Landscape Institute has published a report on investing in landscape here for:-

  • Creating spaces that users can connect with both physically and emotionally – leading to benefits for local businesses such as increased footfall and time spent.

  • Focussing attention on the value of the built and natural environment in the regeneration process.

  • Delivering reduced development costs through the intelligent use of existing landscape features and the imaginative disposal/incorporation of construction waste.

  • Realising increased saleability and rentability of both private housing and commercial property.

  • Optimising the full development potential of a given location.

CIL may be harming progress on developments

Posted on: 31 October 2014 at 20:44:26
Local authorities with a Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) charging schedule in place have seen a 49 per cent drop in the number of new residential planning consents granted in the 12 months following the introduction of the development tarfiff, according to a report by Savills.

Updated CABE-EH Guidance on Tall Buildings

Posted on: 31 October 2014 at 17:19:31
The latest version of the guidance for decision making about tall buildings can be seen here.

City Growth Commission calls for more powers for London

Posted on: 29 October 2014 at 22:02:08
London Councils Chair Mayor Jules Pipe has welcomed the findings of the RSA City Growth Commission that devolution away from Whitehall is an essential condition for strengthening national economic growth. The Commission’s report, launched last week and in full here calls for London, Greater Manchester and West Yorkshire to be given Devolved Status with a package of powers to be agreed between these city-regions with the government by January 2015. Urging the government to respond positively, Mayor Pipe said: "The report supports the call of London local government – the boroughs  and the Mayor – for devolution of services such as skills and employment support."

Ensuring inclusive design in our public spaces

Posted on: 23 October 2014 at 22:20:22
Communities Minister Stephen Williams urged developers in a speech to get communities involved from the very beginning of a project to make buildings, streets and public space more inclusive.

Housing for Vulnerable and Older People by HCA

Posted on: 23 October 2014 at 22:10:03
The Homes and Cmmunities Agency says it is committed to working with providers to deliver housing that meets local priorities and the housing needs of all sections of our communities, including meeting the needs of vulnerable and older people in mainstream, supported and specialised housing.
See here.

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