- Beacons archive
- Beacons round 10
- Homes for the future
- Case studies
- Bolton application case study
- Greenwich application case study
- Sheffield application case study
- St. Helens application case study
- Greenwich Kidbrook case study
- Greenwich housing provision case study
- Greenwich requirements case study
- Greenwich Millennium Village
- Sheffield's Norfolk Park case study
- Sheffield 'SWaN' case study
- Older People’s Housing - Bolton Council
- Refurbishment of existing properties
- Park Hill
- Chaucer district centre
- Strategy, planning and delivery
Maximising housing provision in the current housing climate
The challenge for Greenwich council has been to ensure that housing and regeneration schemes are able to progress in the current housing financial climate. Our approach to tackling this has been to monitor schemes and discuss with the developer/ Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) at an early stage what interventions might be required. This has included some renegotiation of the phasing of schemes and changes in the affordable housing tenures to ensure that they remain on site.
Key learnings for other authorities
A clear framework for development needs to be in place to ensure that authorities can maximise housing delivery. This is basically similar to the areas set out in the Government’s Key Lines of Enquiry (KLOE) for the strategic housing role – and in particular:
- An understanding of housing needs and the housing market – what type of housing needs to be delivered
- Clear direction at both Member and officer level to ensure delivery of housing is central to the authority’s business
- Relevant infrastructures in place
- Partnership approach to delivery.
Ensuring that the necessary infrastructure is in place to facilitate scheme delivery including:
- Transport for both the peninsula (Jubilee Line) and Woolwich (DLR) has been key to the regeneration plans for both areas. We are also working pro-actively with Berkeley Homes for the delivery of Cross rail in Woolwich.
- Schools and health facilities – through linkages to Building Schools for the future and Sure Start
- Practically, Greenwich has ensured that it is aware of the issues for each scheme and talks to the RSL’s and the developers on a regular basis – Greenwich hold quarterly meetings with each RSL to discuss performance and scheme progress. This monitoring is central to our approach to ensuring that the schemes progress.
- Clarity over investment priorities is important to inform discussions with the HCA.
- Strong working relationship between housing enabling and planning officers has ensured that issues over scheme delivery can be picked up and responded to appropriately.
- Need to respond appropriately to delivery issues – not one size fits all.
- Maximise other opportunities for delivering affordable homes – Greenwich has successfully bid for HCA funding to deliver 47 larger family homes on small sites on existing estates.
Making it happen
Greenwich has a partnership approach involving close working relationships through:
- Development of the Greenwich Waterfront Regeneration Agency and Eltham Regeneration Agency – led by the Council and including housing developers and investment agencies such as the HCA and LDA.
- Scheme specific – partnerships developed for major flagship schemes such as Kidbrooke, the Royal Arsenal and the Greenwich Peninsula. These are working partnerships each involving the Council, developer, RSL and the HCA, and have enabled schemes to progress and respond positively to the market.
- Strong long-established RSL Partnership with preferred partners for development.
- Working through the South East London Housing Partnership (SELHP) has enabled standards for housing development to be developed across the sub-region, providing a clear framework for housing investment.
- Housing enabling and planning officers – co-location of housing strategic role within Development, Enterprise and Skills has promoted much closer working on a day to day basis. Clear direction has been provided through the structure from Lead Member for Regeneration through to the officer management structure.
Making a difference
The approach taken by Greenwich and its partners has ensured that housing delivery remains viable in the Borough, with over £270m being invested by the HCA into affordable housing since 2008.
We have supported tenure mix within phases of large scale developments to ensure that the scheme goes ahead. For example a shift to 65% affordable homes in the Armouries at Royal Arsenal, with a reduced percentage in later phases. We have also supported RSL’s to secure increased grant where cross-subsidy from sales is now unachievable.
Flexibility over intermediate housing has been particularly important for scheme viability, with shifts from shared ownership to intermediate rent and rent to buy. This has ensured that the homes are available to people who would not be eligible for social rented homes but who could not afford straightforward shared ownership products at this point in time. RSL’s are also finding that shared ownership has remained viable for some key schemes in the borough, such as Seren Park (Moat Housing).
Greenwich will continue to take a pro-active approach to housing delivery, in particular:
- Review schemes regularly with partners
- Support Kick-start Round 2 where appropriate
- Bid for Local Authority New Build Round 2
For further information regarding this case study please contact:
Housing Strategy and Enabling Manager
phone: 020 8921 5630