Mayor's Proposal Could Mean 'Death' Of Affordable Homes

Murad Qureshi claims changes will make housing crisis worse

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Changes to the London Plan by the Mayor Boris Johnson could lead to 'affordable housing" being set at up to 80 per cent of the market rate, according to London wide Assembly member Murad Qureshi.

He has supported an attempt to block the Mayor’s changes to the London Plan and said changes would lead to many new properties in London meant for people on low and modest incomes becoming totally unaffordable.

Several London boroughs, including Hounslow are suffering a housing crisis and are keen to get more affordable homes built.

Tuesday (September 3) was an historic opportunity for the Assembly to reject a Mayoral strategy but a two-thirds majority could not be secured. This was the first time new powers granted to the Assembly under the Localism Act have been used.

 “Yesterday’s vote is a hammer blow and signals the death of new truly affordable housing in London. It is a complete travesty that this has happened. There are numerous boroughs of all political persuasions who are against the Mayor’s plan.  

“The Mayor’s changes will make London’s housing crisis even worse. They will now push affordable housing out of the reach of many Londoners on low, and in some areas, modest incomes. This will also drive up rent, increase land prices and further distort London’s housing market. Boris should have accepted the recommendations of the Independent Planning Inspector, listened to local authorities and revised his London Plan.

“Combined with the welfare reforms the Mayor’s changes will make huge swathes of inner London even more unaffordable than they already are. Yesterday’s vote will contribute to the ghettoization of our city and put intolerable strain on a range of already overburdened local services in outer London. This is effectively giving up on ordinary Londoners on modest incomes by making it harder for them to find a home that is affordable.”

September 6, 2013