Affordable housing

21 Jan

ClaptonUltras 2015 Jan 18

Will the council stand up for local people or just let Galliard get away with it? I think we all know the answer to that question.

To rub salt into the wound, the developer is proposing that just 51 of the 838 homes to be built on the Boleyn Ground site will be ‘affordable’ housing. That’s made up of 5 studios, 8 one bedroom flats, 25 two bed units and 13 three bed homes. These will be offered on a shared ownership basis: there will be no affordable homes for rent.

As bad as that seems, things are even worse in Stratford.

CBRE are proposing to redevelop Morgan House – an office block – and part of the shopping centre to provide more than 500 new homes. These will overlook the Olympic Park and provide easy access to both east London’s best connected transport hub and Europe’s largest shopping mall. 

Given the high prices such a prime location will attract, it comes as no surprise that, according to the developer:

There are a number of unique and exceptional site-specific circumstances which result cumulatively in the proposal site being entirely unsuitable for on-site affordable housing provision.

The reasoning is that Newham’s priority is family homes, and a town centre location surrounded by busy roads would not be the right place to house families.

So what about the option of providing affordable homes on another site? That’s not going to happen either.

an initial review of site availability in the area has not identified an appropriate donor site for affordable housing provision. Further, the applicant does not have any suitable sites that could be identified for affordable housing provision.

The only option the developer will consider is bunging the council some cash:

Subject to viability, given the very special circumstances involved with the existing site and emerging proposals, it is considered that a commuted payment towards affordable housing provision would be the most appropriate mechanism for the provision of affordable housing.

Of course once the council has the cash – assuming the viability assessment even requires it to be paid – there’s no obligation to actually spend it on providing affordable housing. It can just vanish into the general pot and pay for whatever the mayor wants.

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2 Responses to “Affordable housing”

  1. “There are a number of unique and exceptional site-specific circumstances which result cumulatively in the proposal site being entirely unsuitable for on-site affordable housing provision.”

    What the bloody hell does this even mean in English?!!

    Martin? You sure know how to make my blood boil. This is unbelievable. We are seeing before our very eyes a concrete tsunami rising amidst the landscape of this borough – and the Council for the most part is quite silent. I honestly do not see it doing much to listen to people’s concerns.

    I am not against development. Heaven knows we need regeneration in Newham but should it be done this way and with “commuted payments” being paid into a committed black hole? This is really unfortunate.

  2. bobbyg January 29, 2015 at 10:02 #

    Do Newham Council ever read these comments?. Answers on a ballot paper please .

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