Quick Thoughts on Implications of General Election Stalemate on Planning Reform

The most likely outcome of the election is a conservative minority government with a confidence and supply arrangement with the DUP – which means an open border with Ireland, and hence free movement and no hard Brexit.

For planning reform some quick thoughts:

 The Conservative and Labour Commitments on Housing were essentially the same.

Same housing targets, same policy on Green Belt.  Labour even promised to extend Help to Buy.

But  there was a big shift towards land value capture – for the first time supported by all three parties.

EVEL matters

The Housing and Planning Act was the first to use it.  For planning and housing legislation in England the Tories have a comfortable majority.

Prioritizing Home Ownership over Housing Numbers is Dead

The Very short term impact of Alex Marsh on the 2015 Manifesto

The Neoliberal Urge to Planning deregulation is Over

The whole justification for the NPPF system is gone.  It stays because of lack of appetite for disruption, but the appeal led system will weaken.

Barwell is Gone

Best housing minister since Silkin.  He will be missed.  Suspect any new minister will simply progress Housing White Paper without the expertise.

The Shift Towards Zoning?

Unmistakable in last three years.  Unclear whether will be pursued with same enthusiasm.  But main change already implemented is need to implement Brownfield registers and PiP.

The Systemic Housing Shortfall Caused by Lack of Strategic Planning and Powerful Delivery bodies remains

All Parties will take the lesson of a powerful housing offer to the young at the next election without penalising the old and unwell.

 

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