Minister Strengthens Planning To Get Tough On Land Banking

The Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) has spoken out to say it is delighted to see a bold Ministerial response to tackling land banking as set out in the Callcutt Review of housing delivery.

Yvette Cooper has announced she will consult on a new legal definition of what constitutes 'starting on site'. The Minister has also proposed a 'new industry standard' to increase clarity and transparency in developers land holdings.

The RTPI was the first to put these ideas forward in our report showing that house builders are sitting on enough land with planning permission to build 225,000 new homes.

RTPI Director of Policy, Rynd Smith, said: "The Minister is laying firm foundations for the planning system to tackle the issue of land banking, speed up delivery of new homes and clearly identify where land is being held and by whom.

"The key issue remains quality. Unless and until the quality of new developments is raised to a consistently high standard, communities and their elected representatives will continue to resist the schemes of volume house-builders, with justification. Raised numbers means raising quality."

Mr Smith concluded: "The RTPI report 'Opening up the Debate: Housing land Supply Myths', delivered a firm message to Government that a clear and standardised statistical base was needed to make the landholdings of developers more transparent.

"We are glad to see the Minister outlining plans to work with the house building industry, financial institutions, and the International Financial Reporting Standards Board to solve this problem."

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