Another day, another stats based blog post.
It’s all about the HARD data, right?
And so on the agenda today is Safe as Houses – or to put it in basic terms: how many homes are being built in the borough?
Good question, well put.
What you need is the handy Local Plan Committee report ahead of the Grand Jury Room Christmas p-up on 18 December.
And whaddyaknow – here it is [pdf].
The pre-Christmas nibbles will be shared by the members of the Local Plan Committee as they consider the:
Authority Monitoring Report
The Local Plan Committee has all the BEST parties.
Basically the report is a state of the nation / borough when it comes to building houses.
We have a housing crisis, right?
We need to build more homes, yeah?
But Colchester is already at bursting point…
The data in the report kinda back this up.
Between April 2016 and March 2017, 912 new homes were built in the borough. This is slightly down on the 933 of the previous financial year.
This is a key statistic to consider. If the Local Plan gets its arse in gear and submits to the government Inspector before March, CBC will be able to hold down the yearly new build figure at 920.
If you think that we have reached maximum capacity over the past couple of years then this is the best level that the Council can hope to control
Miss the March deadline and an extra 20% quota will be added on by central government.
Cheers, central government.
Elsewhere in the Local Plan Committee report and we find that out of this 912 total, a miserly 65 were ‘affordable’ – whatever that is classified as these days – and 35 were shared ownership.
This represents a pithy 10% of the total number of new builds in the borough. The previous two years were 11% and 26% respectively.
In other words Colchester is building less affordable homes 🙁
The report does the math to state that at the current building rate, 5,216 new homes will be built over the next five years.
This averages out at 1,043 per year – more than 100 above the 920 government level.
A return of Question Time to the Town Hall in five years time could be lively.
As for where we are building these homes?
73% of new and converted dwellings were built on previously developed land. This led to a net loss of 8,690 square meters of commercial floorspace.
We are becoming a town of homes, and not industry.
Apart from the burger bars along the High Street, natch.
Houses, houses, houses.
It’s all about the houses.
And we haven’t even mentioned the Bloody Garden Villages.