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Build New "Millennial Towns" Around London, Report Urges

Think tank claims current housing plans by the Government and Mayor of London are inadequate

New plans by a centre-Right think tank propose thousands of homes could be built in new commuter towns around London

Plans have been proposed to create a range of new commuter towns to tackle to the housing crisis in London.

The report, titled “Tomorrow’s Places” by the think tank Policy Exchange, proposes the creation of 15 “millennial towns” which would be either an extension of an existing settlement, or a new development entirely, some of which could provide at least 30,000 new homes over the next decade.

Their construction would be overseen by a new Government body, the Department for Growth, which would collaborate with the Mayor of London.

The report also recommends the creation of Development Corporations that in the past have been used to deliver large scale projects and regeneration, such as the building of Milton Keynes, the London Docklands, and the Olympic Park.

The Policy Exchange also suggests the new towns should be built along major transport routes which extend beyond London, such as the growth corridors recognised by the Government and Greater London Authority, using a balanced approach to land use regulations.

Another key recommendation is that the new towns are designed using innovative construction methods that will deliver a variety of different housing types at affordable prices that will gain the support and approval of the local population.

The report, co-authored by Boris Johnson’s former Deputy Mayor for Housing, Richard Blakeway, claims that the Government and current Mayor Sadiq Khan’s plans are inadequate to deliver the housing London needs.

“Both London and national government have plans for increasing housing supply, yet neither, as we argue in this report, adequately grapple with the pace at which the capital has grown or is expected to grow.

“The Mayor of London’s housing plan struggles to identify enough land for enough new homes to be built on and accommodate[sic] the other growth needs of London, while new ‘Garden Communities’ supported by the Government are too far from London and many of them might not be built at all.”

According to data from the Ministry of Housing, as many as one third of Local Authorities in England have missed their housing delivery targets.

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