Any decision to build on the green belt is going to be controversial. There is a clear need to increase supply of all types of home however, and no appetite for creating any new towns any time soon. The answer is either to build up or build out.
The Centre for Cities has released interesting research (and another cool map) showing that just 5.2% of existing green belt around the ten least affordable cities in the UK would need to be sacrificed to allow construction of 1.5 million new homes.
To build the homes we need in the cities that need them we must go further. Our research found that developing just 5.2 per cent of the green belt around the ten least affordable cities in the UK could supply 1.5 million new homes close to train stations. The consultation does highlight the potential of increasing the density of homes close to train stations, but to be truly effective it must extend this to all land including the green belt. It’s time to consider land for housing on its merits rather than its previous designation.