"London's reserves of brownfield land will not be enough to meet rising housing demand and councils should look to review green belt in their areas to provide for more homes, a report has recommended."
"The Green Belt: A Place for Londoners?, by SERC at the London School of Economics, Quod planning consultancy, and business group London First, argues that argues that [sic] it is unrealistic to assume that building on brownfield sites will provide sufficient land to meet London’s housing need.
It says London’s boroughs 'should be encouraged to review their green belt and consider how the land within it can be most effectively used and what the options are for re-designating a small fraction for new homes'.
The document says that the starting point for any green belt review 'should be to only consider areas that are close to existing or future transport nodes, that are of poor environmental or civic value and could better serve London’s needs by supporting sustainable, high-quality, well-designed residential development that incorporates truly accessible green space'.
The report also highlights key facts on the London’s green belt including:
- A quarter of the land inside London’s green belt (within the area of the Greater London Authority) is environmentally designated land, parks, or land with real public access.
- 27.6 per cent of London is covered by buildings, roads, paths, and railways.
- 22 per cent of all the land within London’s boundary is green belt.
- Around 60 per cent of London’s green belt is within 2km of an existing rail or tube station.
Barney Stringer, a director at Quod said:
"We need to make the most of brownfield sites, but if we want to protect the quality of London for the growing number of people who live in London, then we can’t continue to rule out sensible reviews of the green belt boundaries."