Recently returned housing secretary Michael Gove has confirmed the 300,000-new-homes-a-year target abolished by former prime minister Liz Truss will now remain in place.
Speaking on the BBC’s Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg, Gove replied to Kuenssberg’s question on whether the figure was still a target for the government with a clear “yes”.
He said: “We need to build more homes – we need to build more homes for people to own, we also need to build more homes for social rent, we need to build more council houses, we need to build more housing association homes.”
When pressed further, Gove implied former housing minister Lee Rowley’s announcement last month that Truss was “clear that she wants to abolish top-down housing targets” did not necessarily represent a U-turn on previous government policy. He also hinted that housing targets may be reviewed.
The top-down housing targets that….Liz was referring to are part of a broader and different calculation from the 300,000 in the manifesto.
“My view is that what we do need here is a fair way of allocating housing need that takes account of changes in population. Some of the calculations that have been made in the past have been wrong. We need to rebase that, but what we critically need to do is to make sure we have local communities consenting to development and that means that homes need to be more beautiful, it means that we need the infrastructure alongside them, but it critically also means that we need to make sure that the environment is protected as well.”
Gove also said that Truss’ planned Investment Zones would also be reviewed.
”They caused some concern,” he said. ”We will review them but there is no way we are undermining our environmental protections.”
Source: Property Week