In his column, PPS’ Byfield suggested that Goldsmith’s campaign seemed rather vague – yet to gather momentum. But both men appear to be taking the long view with their plans, says Simon Petar, associate director at iNHouse, a public affairs consultancy. “With both of them aiming to protect the green belt, it’s wiser to look at these manifesto commitments as two-term pledges given the scale of the task at hand,” he advises. However, whilst some of these policy offerings contain “useful ideas,” they are not going to yield the volume of homes the capital needs in rapid time, comments Martin Skinner, ceo of Inspired Homes. “Viability is a big issue in London. A lot of schemes aren’t coming forward because of housebuilders renegotiating section 106 requirements. Smaller housebuilders can’t make traditional schemes work as they eat away at their margins and take too long.”

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