Brownfield land

New measures to boost brownfield development revealed

Housing minister Gavin Barwell has introduced new tools to help councils speed up housing developments on derelict and underused land.

Local authorities across the country will now have to produce and maintain up-to-date, publicly available registers of brownfield sites available for housing in the area.

The new registers will help housebuilders identify brownfield sites quicker and enable developers to obtain planning ‘permission in principle’, giving them greater certainty over whether a site is suitable in advance of undertaking costly proposals.

Mr Barwell said: “We need to build more homes in this country, so making sure that we re-use brownfield land is crucial.

“We want to bring life back to abandoned sites, create thousands more homes and help protect our valued countryside.

“These new registers will give local authorities and developers the tools to do this.”

Communities will now be able to highlight local derelict or underused building sites that are ideal for redevelopment, bringing investment and new housing to the area.

The announcement follows a pilot in 2016, during which 73 local planning authorities across the country trialled the measures.

Further legislation will follow this year to roll-out permission in principle more widely through the planning system.

The £3bn Home Builders Fund will also be used to support brownfield development sites, with an additional £1.2bn dedicated to unlock at least 30,000 starter homes in these areas.

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