Following cuts to capital grant and financial restrictions on councils, we now rely on private developers to deliver a large share of new affordable homes through the Section 106 system. But since 2012, national planning rules have blunted this tool by enabling the widespread use and abuse of viability assessments.
CPRE Shropshire recognises that not all development is bad and the right houses in the right place are needed for our increasing population. We need to make sure that there are affordable houses being built for local people as well as developments of larger homes.
Shropshire Council have not achieved their targets for providing affordable houses either as a percentage of overall development or within their own building programme. We recognise the reduced funding which local authorities and housing associations receive from Central Government for Affordable Housing and accept that this is a national problem which our National Office are working on. We also need good design for village developments in keeping with the rest of the built environment.
Shropshire Council is now proposing to set up a “vehicle” to build houses itself, with a greater proportion being affordable.
Updated 14th November 2018