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Nine of London's new housing zones announced

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London mayor, Boris Johnson has today announced the first of 20 new housing zones across the city

The nine zones announced on Friday (20 February) aim to unlock redevelopment on brownfield land and are an integral part of the Mayor’s Housing Strategy. Johnson has set a target of 42,000 new homes a year to meet the capital’s growing population.

New Bermondsey, one of the zones announced, will have 2,400 new homes under plans drawn up by Studio Egret West (SEW) for the 12ha area around Millwall FC’s New Den stadium (see AJ 14.07.10). The housing zone bid was jointly submitted by developer Renewal and Lewisham Council, and will make available £20 million, provided as a loan, to allow construction work to begin on a new Overground station this year.

The area, formerly known as Surrey Canal, won outline planning consent in March 2012 and will be home to London’s largest indoor sports centre, a creative and media Quarter, and an integrated health complex.  

Johnson said: ‘As London’s population continues to boom, already at its highest since records began and with more growth predicted, housing is a huge challenge. We need to double housebuilding and provide a million more homes by 2025.

We need to double housebuilding

‘These innovative new Housing Zones, the first of their kind in the UK, will trigger regeneration and turbo boost the transformation of the capital’s brownfield sites, creating tens of thousands of new homes for hard working Londoner in first class new neighbourhoods.’

Lucy Haynes, CBI London director, added: The announcement of nine new housing zones is a step in the right direction to tackling London’s endemic housing problem. The lack of affordable housing to rent and buy is a real headache for the capital and its businesses, many of whose employees are finding themselves increasingly priced out of the city.

‘Policymakers of all shades must take bold action to ramp up the supply of new homes. Without it, there is a risk that London’s attractiveness as a place to invest and do business could be undermined.’

In total across the capital, the housing zones will unlock the redevelopment of 1897.42 hectares of brownfield land, the equivalent of 2,656 football pitches. The special status has been awarded to areas identified by London boroughs as key opportunity sites and the housing zone status will remain until 2025.

London’s first nine Housing Zones

Abbey Wood and South Thamesmead: 13.42 hectare area between Abbey Wood Station (the terminus of Crossrail) and Southmere Lake. It is expected the Zone will create a new urban boulevard and town centre within the heart of Thamesmead. Includes 1300 new homes and will unlock existing cleared sites and create new commercial space.

Abbey Wood, Plumstead and Thamesmead: This site has been identified by the Royal Borough of Greenwich in partnership with Peabody Trust and is expected to provide 1512 new homes, (45% of which would affordable) and 3,024 jobs. The housing zone will include improved public spaces, roads and footpaths in the area to capitalise on the arrival of Crossrail to Abbey Wood in 2018.

Barking Town Centre: 97 hectare housing zone will host over 2000 new homes and 4000 new jobs, alongside improved local public spaces and new culture and leisure facilities. 

Clapham Junction to Battersea Riverside: This housing zone has excellent transport links to the West End, City of London and Gatwick Airport, and it will attract £1.4 billion of investment to deliver 5000 new homes, new commercial space and 1300 new jobs. 

Heart of Harrow: Both Harrow and Wealdstone town centres sit within the Heart of Harrow Housing Zone. The new Zone will see more than 5000 homes built over the next ten years and accelerate delivery of the council’s private rented sector programme.

Hounslow Town Centre: This 466 hectare Housing Zone is part of Hounslow’s ambitious regeneration programme, designed to boost job and business growth, and to accelerate high quality house-building for residents. It is expected that the zone will lead to the delivery of 3478 new homes built by 2025 (1383 affordable). The Zone is also expected to lead to the creation of almost 7000 jobs.

New Bermondsey [Studio Egret West]: This site will become a new neighbourhood with 2400 new homes and over 2000 new jobs. The new housing zone will fund transport improvements to accelerate delivery, including a new London Overground station, speed up the construction of homes and accelerate development to complete construction within eight years.

Southall: This part of Ealing will benefit from being on the new Crossrail route. The new housing zone will deliver 4345 new homes (1785 affordable). The Zone will also improve the station arrival point for Crossrail and allow for infrastructure improvements to help connect sites across Southall.

Tottenham: This area of Haringey is one of the capital’s big growth opportunities. Regeneration plans supported by a housing zone will see 10000 new homes built and 5000 new jobs created by 2025. The zone will offer opportunities to build almost 2000 new homes around and on top of a redeveloped Tottenham Hale station and open up the Lee Valley Regional Park with two new bridges.

A further six zones will be announced in coming weeks, with the last five to be finalised by the summer. 

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