Labour London Assembly member Nicky Gavron today accused Boris Johnson of breaking a key housing pledge as new figures reveal that the number of homes being built on land under his control has plummeted since 2008.
Three years ago the Mayor said he would build thousands of homes on land under his control, promising: “I’ll put my land where my mouth is”. But figures released today show that, under Boris Johnson’s stewardship, house building on land owned by the London Development Agency (LDA) has fallen to its lowest level for over six years.
Just 667 homes have been built completed since Boris Johnson was elected in 2008, almost half the number built between 2005 – 2008 (1,307). The rate of building has fallen to its lowest level since 2002-5.
Labour’s housing spokesperson on the London Assembly, Nicky Gavron, said:
“Boris Johnson made a clear promise to deliver thousands of affordable homes by bringing public land back into use but the reality is that house building is falling off a cliff under his administration.
“There is a desperate need for more homes in London that people can afford and land sitting there waiting to be used – Londoners need more than fine words and empty promises.”
Pledging to free up public land for housing, the Mayor said in 2009:
“I’ll put my land where my mouth is”.
“The GLA is sitting on hundreds of potential housing sites that could be used to build more than 32,000 new homes and I know we’re not alone”, the Mayor said. London’s councils, private institutions and HCA can all do the same but the cost and red tape involved is suffocating. I want to change this. To do this we need innovative ideas that will reshape how we invest, build and deliver affordable homes in London and in return I’ll put my land where my mouth is and show London is leading the way on delivering affordable homes for 2011 and beyond.”
Figures from a written answer to the London Assembly show that an average of 351 homes a year were delivered between 2004 – 2008 but since Boris Johnson was elected the average has fallen to just 222 a year.