The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) is recruiting a consultant to draw up a design guide that will promote quality in new developments
The team chosen for the estimated £50,000 contract will work with MHCLG’s in-house design team to create an illustrated toolkit to replace the existing text-only advice contained within the government’s Planning Practice Guidance (PPG) and revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).
The design toolkit intends to deliver on the aims of the government’s 2017 white paper by helping planners, developers and built environment professionals create high-quality residential developments that earn the support of local communities.
In its brief the department says: ‘The design team is working across MHCLG and other government departments to ensure greater emphasis is placed on design quality in policies and programmes as part of a funded action plan, to implement the housing white paper aspirations for higher quality in the built environment.
‘The design team wish to appoint either a third-sector design consultancy or a built environment design consultancy that is able to provide design expertise including urban design, architectural and landscape skills to support the preparation of the text, source supporting images and illustrations and prepare a downloadable document to be hosted on the GOV.UK website.’
MHCLG was given an explicit remit for housing in its title in January 2018. The government’s Fixing our Broken Housing Market white paper set out plans to boost both quality and supply.
The 2017 white paper set out plans to boost supply by ensuring councils held up-to-date housing plans, granting new powers to pressure developers to build-out permissions, and investing £3 billion in off-site construction and smaller suppliers.
The government pledged to boost the supply of new dwellings to 300,000 per year by the mid-2020s, however last year only 220,000 were completed – falling significantly short of the estimated 250,000 needed to ‘break even’.
According to homelessness charity Shelter, at least 3.1 million new social homes will be needed over the next two decades to address the UK’s existing deficit and meet anticipated demand.
The MHCLG design guide aims to boost supply by helping planners, developers and built environment professionals deliver new housing which earns the support of local communities concerned about the quality of new development in their areas.
The winning team will work with the ministry to identify tools, techniques, processes, design principles and exemplar schemes which can be used to ensure quality is embedded in future policies, programmes and projects.
The deadline for applications is 5 April.
How to apply
View the contract notice for more information
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
2 Marsham Street