Deputy Mayor for Housing James Murray’s next steps
13 July 2016, Blog
Sadiq Khan’s commitment to build more affordable homes was his key election pledge. The London First launch Homes for Londoners: A Blue Print for how the Mayor can deliver the homes Londoners need gave Deputy Mayor for Housing James Murray an opportunity to outline his plans to tackle London’s Housing crisis, detailed here.
James refused to provide a “running commentary” about each step of his future plans to the audience, but his record as Islington Council’s Housing Executive in achieving London’s highest percentage of affordable housing in new developments, and a more transparent approach to viability assessments, is a good guide to his approach.
Relying on changes to the London Plan won’t be enough as the process from publishing supplementary guidance to full adoption takes more than two years and Sadiq Khan needs results well before that if he is going to win re-election in 2020.
That’s why the call by James for new strategic partnerships with housing associations and for other partners to supply both social rented, part rent part buy, and the new category of “Living Rent” will be crucial in delivering results – especially in the early stages of the Mayor’s term. As the Deputy Mayor formulates his plans, now is the ideal time to engage with him on innovative ways to create more affordable housing in London.
Paul Smith is JBP’s Senior Counsel. He worked as a senior strategy advisor on Sadiq Khan’s Mayoral Primary campaign and has been the Deputy Leader of the Labour Group on Islington Council since 2006.