London Community Land Trust has won a bid to deliver new affordable homes on two sites owned by TfL (Transport for London), marketed by its Small Sites, Small Builders programme, which offers small, publicly-owned sites to SME developers.
Cable Street in Tower Hamlets and Christchurch Road in Lambeth will deliver almost 75 new homes to the city, all of which will be genuinely and permanently affordable.
The two developments form part of Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan’s commitment to increasing community-led housing across the capital, with a £3.8 million pot reserved for building new housing over the next 12 months. Further financial backing is expected to be distributed to housing groups over the next four years.
Khan has been working closely with TfL to fast-track the release of its small, publicly-owned land. In 2017 TfL committed to delivering more than 3,800 new homes and is currently on track to bring forward land for around 3,000 more properties.
The small sites programme is contributing to the Mayor’s target of delivering 50 per cent affordable housing on land across the capital.
Khan’s pilot scheme gained significant interest, receiving 134 bids from 80 different organisations. 166 new homes were proposed across ten TfL-owned sites, with 64 per cent of the homes being affordable. London CLT’s winning bid was for 100 per cent affordable housing, creating almost 75 new homes across two sites.
London CLT and Citizens UK have been campaigning for new affordable homes across London. The group recently submitted plans for 11 permanently affordable homes at Brasted Close, showing its continued commitment to afford homes for local people.
The homes at Cable Street and Christchurch Road will be priced according to average local income, costing less than half the amount of similar properties available on the open market.
Purchasers will sign into contracts and will be obligated to sell the homes on at a price linked to local income at that time, meaning the homes will remain affordable for years to come.
Khan commented on the news: “Making small plots of public land available for housing development is a key part of addressing London’s housing shortage, and the fantastic response to the pilot of my ‘Small Sites, Small Builders’ programme has shown that these small sites can be an important way to get new genuinely affordable homes built.”
“I am also proud to support community-led housing, and I am pleased that London Community Land Trust will be building 100 per cent affordable housing on their sites in Tower Hamlets and Lambeth, which will make a huge difference to those communities. Not only will this programme help to provide the new, genuinely affordable homes that Londoners so desperately need, but it will also reinvigorate our small and medium-sized homebuilders after years of over-reliance on large developers.”
Calum Green, Co-Director of London CLT, also commented: “London should be a city for all. To do that, we must build more homes that Londoners can afford. Community Land Trusts are a way for Londoners to play our part in delivering the genuinely and permanently affordable homes that our city desperately needs. These two sites, announced by the Mayor today, will mean over two hundred people will no longer be forced to leave London and can stay in the neighbourhood they call home.”
Words: Jen Grimble