More vision, please

I NOTICE that Matthew Laverack and others have taken up their pens again to berate the council in modifying its affordable housing requirements.

They are correct that the minor amendments will not galvanise the building industry into action. The challenge in York is immense. New homes completed last year numbered only 320, including 100 flats for students, by comparison with 1,160 homes five years ago. With 800 additional homes required each year, much more needs to be done.

The public should know there are outstanding planning permissions for more than 2,800 homes already given by the council. So what is stopping developers turning these approvals into homes?

Barratt Homes told the same meeting attended by Mr Laverack that up to 40 per cent of potential purchasers could not get a mortgage. Not that the proportion of affordable homes was a barrier to their building – indeed they were already on site.

But the council could do more in the future. Using its own land holdings and making such land available at less than the market price would act as a stimulant.

We need less of the nit-picking by Mr Laverack and friends and more vision and ambition by the council in partnership with the building industry.

Bob Towner, Hobgate, York.

Comments (10)

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10:48am Tue 12 Feb 13

Scarlet Pimpernel says...

Some clever use of statistics by ex-City of York Council Director of Housing, 'Red' Bob Towner.

The housing completion stats are true.
The 40% who cannot access mortgages, probably is true, but, proves only that less houses are bought by first time buyers.
That Barratt did not say affordable rules were holding them back from building, but neither did they say they were ! How do they explain then that they have not bought a site in York for about four years, and the one they have at New Lane has only got planning because the LDF was withdrawn, otherwise the land, which was not allocated for housing in the SHLAA (part of the LDF Core Strategy), would have been turned down for housing.

As usual, no explanation for York's 72% decline from it's 2004/05 peak to the 2011/12 low which is almost double that of the UK, or an explanation of why York's peak was 3-4 tears before almost everyone elses in the UK, and before the credit crunch. As those of us who have been following the numbers are only too well aware, it was the Council's 50% affordable housing policy that caused the premature decline and cost York's economy hundreds of millions, and lost thousands of houses and jobs !

Jobs and growth ?
Not while Labour's Merrett and Simpson-Laing are running things with the left wing housing officers !
Some clever use of statistics by ex-City of York Council Director of Housing, 'Red' Bob Towner. The housing completion stats are true. The 40% who cannot access mortgages, probably is true, but, proves only that less houses are bought by first time buyers. That Barratt did not say affordable rules were holding them back from building, but neither did they say they were ! How do they explain then that they have not bought a site in York for about four years, and the one they have at New Lane has only got planning because the LDF was withdrawn, otherwise the land, which was not allocated for housing in the SHLAA (part of the LDF Core Strategy), would have been turned down for housing. As usual, no explanation for York's 72% decline from it's 2004/05 peak to the 2011/12 low which is almost double that of the UK, or an explanation of why York's peak was 3-4 tears before almost everyone elses in the UK, and before the credit crunch. As those of us who have been following the numbers are only too well aware, it was the Council's 50% affordable housing policy that caused the premature decline and cost York's economy hundreds of millions, and lost thousands of houses and jobs ! Jobs and growth ? Not while Labour's Merrett and Simpson-Laing are running things with the left wing housing officers ! Scarlet Pimpernel
  • Score: 0

10:52am Tue 12 Feb 13

The Great Buda says...

If first time buyers cannot get a mortgage, then no amount of letter writing to the Press will change anything.

I suggest Mr Laverack and friends invest their obvious energy and spare time into tackiling the real problem.
If first time buyers cannot get a mortgage, then no amount of letter writing to the Press will change anything. I suggest Mr Laverack and friends invest their obvious energy and spare time into tackiling the real problem. The Great Buda
  • Score: 0

10:55am Tue 12 Feb 13

Scarlet Pimpernel says...

The Get York Building initiative is a scandal and a stitch-up.

The consultation was rigged, and a survey of unimplemented planning applications is a pack of lies. The Council based their affordable target interventio proposal on this survey, but, will not allow the public to see it, because it is commercially sensitive and confidential - what a load of tosh ! They won't let you see it because it's a stitch-up, and doesn't justify what they say it does.

The Council are lying and cheating on this in a fashion that is breathtaking. It's a complete work of fiction, and they are in it up to their necks - deep doo-doo !!!
The Get York Building initiative is a scandal and a stitch-up. The consultation was rigged, and a survey of unimplemented planning applications is a pack of lies. The Council based their affordable target interventio proposal on this survey, but, will not allow the public to see it, because it is commercially sensitive and confidential - what a load of tosh ! They won't let you see it because it's a stitch-up, and doesn't justify what they say it does. The Council are lying and cheating on this in a fashion that is breathtaking. It's a complete work of fiction, and they are in it up to their necks - deep doo-doo !!! Scarlet Pimpernel
  • Score: 0

10:56am Tue 12 Feb 13

Scarlet Pimpernel says...

The Great Buda wrote:
If first time buyers cannot get a mortgage, then no amount of letter writing to the Press will change anything. I suggest Mr Laverack and friends invest their obvious energy and spare time into tackiling the real problem.
No they shouldn't - the Council should !
[quote][p][bold]The Great Buda[/bold] wrote: If first time buyers cannot get a mortgage, then no amount of letter writing to the Press will change anything. I suggest Mr Laverack and friends invest their obvious energy and spare time into tackiling the real problem.[/p][/quote]No they shouldn't - the Council should ! Scarlet Pimpernel
  • Score: 0

10:58am Tue 12 Feb 13

Scarlet Pimpernel says...

The Council are making matters worse.

It helps no one to cheat with policy making, used for ideological and political skulduggery !
The Council are making matters worse. It helps no one to cheat with policy making, used for ideological and political skulduggery ! Scarlet Pimpernel
  • Score: 0

11:05am Tue 12 Feb 13

Scarlet Pimpernel says...

The Councils unimplemented plannin permissions numbered 4,000 at the beginning of 2011/12, and now it's 2,800 - a drop of 1,200. Meanwhile only 321 have been built. Do the maths - why the difference/disparity ?

It's because planning permissions are lapsing/expiring and very few new sitees are coming forward. The pipeline is reducing with few being built and few new sites coming forward, that means fewer, not more homes in the future. It's reaching critical levels, yet the Council are doing nothing positive to reverse things. It's their fault and they know it, and York's housing crisis will get worse, until the left wing policies are exposed and those behind them sacked.

Sack Merrett and Simpson-Laing, plus the politicised officers, now !
The Councils unimplemented plannin permissions numbered 4,000 at the beginning of 2011/12, and now it's 2,800 - a drop of 1,200. Meanwhile only 321 have been built. Do the maths - why the difference/disparity ? It's because planning permissions are lapsing/expiring and very few new sitees are coming forward. The pipeline is reducing with few being built and few new sites coming forward, that means fewer, not more homes in the future. It's reaching critical levels, yet the Council are doing nothing positive to reverse things. It's their fault and they know it, and York's housing crisis will get worse, until the left wing policies are exposed and those behind them sacked. Sack Merrett and Simpson-Laing, plus the politicised officers, now ! Scarlet Pimpernel
  • Score: 0

11:21am Tue 12 Feb 13

capt spaulding says...

The Great Buda wrote:
If first time buyers cannot get a mortgage, then no amount of letter writing to the Press will change anything.

I suggest Mr Laverack and friends invest their obvious energy and spare time into tackiling the real problem.
The real problem being the removal of the councilors and politicalised officers who for their own agendas are wrecking the local economy.
[quote][p][bold]The Great Buda[/bold] wrote: If first time buyers cannot get a mortgage, then no amount of letter writing to the Press will change anything. I suggest Mr Laverack and friends invest their obvious energy and spare time into tackiling the real problem.[/p][/quote]The real problem being the removal of the councilors and politicalised officers who for their own agendas are wrecking the local economy. capt spaulding
  • Score: 0

11:53am Tue 12 Feb 13

Mulgrave says...

The opportunity cost of splurging half a million on a forthcoming cycling event, is that, of course, there is no money to set up a lending scheme to offer mortgages to property buyers in York which would restore the traditional role the Council played in funding property purchase in the city. With that amount as seed capital there must be many citizens who have capital and would be pleased with a better return than the banks are offering, with the bonus that it would help first time buyers in a way they were perhaps helped when they bought their first home in the city.
The opportunity cost of splurging half a million on a forthcoming cycling event, is that, of course, there is no money to set up a lending scheme to offer mortgages to property buyers in York which would restore the traditional role the Council played in funding property purchase in the city. With that amount as seed capital there must be many citizens who have capital and would be pleased with a better return than the banks are offering, with the bonus that it would help first time buyers in a way they were perhaps helped when they bought their first home in the city. Mulgrave
  • Score: 0

12:31pm Tue 12 Feb 13

capt spaulding says...

40 years ago as an employee of Leeds City Council I qualified for a council mortgage.
Got me on the ladder of home ownership when Terraces cost 2 grand.
Surely something like that could be done with our council instead of pumping obscene amounts of cash into dubious projects promoted by Council leaders at even further expence.

That would be a real start for first timers and kick start the housing market.
40 years ago as an employee of Leeds City Council I qualified for a council mortgage. Got me on the ladder of home ownership when Terraces cost 2 grand. Surely something like that could be done with our council instead of pumping obscene amounts of cash into dubious projects promoted by Council leaders at even further expence. That would be a real start for first timers and kick start the housing market. capt spaulding
  • Score: 0

6:18pm Wed 13 Feb 13

Malcolm says...

Never trust a property developer.
Never trust a property developer. Malcolm
  • Score: 0

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