Housing Minister calls demolition of London tower blocks

24 June 2015, Blog

Following his recent reappointment as Housing Minister, Brandon Lewis has made calls to demolish and redevelop council estates across London. He argues that the move would help deliver a much needed boost to the supply of new homes in London and has used the recent developments of Haggerston estate in Hackney and Packington estate in Islington as examples where high rise concrete blocks can be “torn down and replaced with streets”.

His announcement builds upon earlier calls made by Lord Adonis, who published a paper earlier this year arguing that local authorities ought to knock down existing council estates on valuable brownfield land, to build mixed communities that would function as ‘city villages’. His paper was met with criticism from housing campaigners, who remain concerned that the price of homes on new development sites is too costly for people who currently live in council housing.  

Lewis has stated that relatively low densities on housing estates could be partly to blame for the lack of available housing in the Capital. With £150m worth of government funds allocated to the redevelopment of London, he is hoping that the demolition of these estates “will provide more homes and commercial space for the same amount of land”.

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