Greengates Builders Merchants

Small Builders To Get Access To Land

Labour government would require councils to include a higher proportion of small development sites in their land pipelines as part of a push to boost the role of small and medium house­bu­ilders in building new homes, the party’s spokesperson has said.

In a speech yesterday, shadow housing minister Emma Reynolds outlined plans to increase the role of small to medium builders in the supply of new homes, including a proposal to require local authorities to include a higher proportion of small sites in their five year land supply.

Reynolds also said a future Labour government will give guaranteed access to public land to smaller firms and that any public land given over for house­bu­ilding will have a proportion dedicated for small to medium firms and self-build or custom house­bu­ilding as we know that one of the key barriers for small and custom builders is access to land.

Build First - a package of measures to assemble an army of smaller firms and custom builders to tackle the housing shortage and help the next generation on to the property ladder.”

Reynolds said: “As currently structured, our country’s building sector has a broken gear stick. When the time comes to shift up a gear our house­bu­ilding industry is found wanting.

“Over the past 30 years we have been consistently out-built by our inter­national competitors.

“France has a similar population but is building three times as many homes. Canada has half our population but is out-building us by two to one. Japan has twice our population but is building ten times as many homes - building over 90,000 homes in November alone.

“There is no single reason for this but one of the key factors is that our building sector has become less competitive and this has had serious conse­qu­ences.

“Fixing the gear stick - delivering a step-change in house­bu­ilding

“To achieve our ambition of doubling house­bu­ilding and then going further to meet need - we need a thriving building sector. That means our big volume house­bu­ilders have an essential role to play.”

“However, we must introduce greater competition and diversity if we are to increase output, driving innovation and improving quality.”

Reynolds also reaffirmed Labour’s commitment to building a new generation of garden cities, with a proportion of the new development to be built by small to medium firms.


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