London’s Mayor aims to build 200,000 homes on brownfield sites in East London

‘City in the East’ master plan shows how London is moving eastwards

London Mayor Boris Johnson has launched a ‘City in the East’ master plan which explains how major development should take place in London with the aim of building 200,000 homes and creating 250,000 jobs on brownfield sites across the capital. The ‘City in the East’ master plan would see East London transformed, with major developments taking place from London Bridge to the Isle of Dogs and the Greenwich Peninsula, through to Ilford in Essex and Dartford in Kent.

In a press release, the Greater London Authority (GLA) says the Mayor’s office estimated in 2004 that East London had the capacity for 52,000 new homes. But detailed modelling carried out by City Hall now reveals that a minimum of 203,500 homes and 283,300 jobs could be delivered over the next 20 years.

The ‘City in the East’ master plan brings together a number of major developments that are already taking place in 13 designated areas in the capital, known as Opportunity Areas. The Opportunity Areas have been identified as London’s major source of brownfield land with significant capacity for new housing, commercial space and other development.

The plan also contains a series of maps which show how the city is moving eastwards and indicates how London could benefit from improvements to transport infrastructure such as Crossrail and HS1. A number of projects, such as plans for an overground extension to Barking Riverside, have been made possible by Transport for London’s Growth Fund, which is designed to target transport improvements in areas where there’s potential to unlock new homes and jobs.

Alex Williams, Transport for London’s Director of Borough Planning, said that East London is expected to be one of the largest growth areas in the capital, with the population set to increase by 600,000 in the next 15 years. GLA’s press release says London is home to more than 8.6 million people with the latest projections estimating the city will grow to 11 million people by 2050.

GLA says: “To ensure this record population growth is managed, the Mayor has set ambitious housing targets that aim to double the number of new homes built. He has also identified numerous sites across the capital that are each ripe for thousands of new homes and jobs. The Mayor is on track to build a record 100,000 low cost homes for Londoners over his two terms, with more than 94,000 already completed. In this financial year, almost 18,000 affordable homes have been built, more than in any other year since 1981 and the equivalent of one every 30 minutes.”

London’s Mayor Boris Johnson said: “East London is already enjoying incredible growth and the ‘City in the East’ plans reflect how we make the area an even better place to live and work over the next 20 years. This blueprint reflects identified areas of land in London to build on and it will allow us to coordinate not only housing and commercial developments, but significant transport infrastructure to ensure this part of the capital can continue to flourish with hundreds of thousands of new jobs that will help the capital to remain the best big city in the world.”

The press release details the numbers of homes and jobs that the ‘City in the East’ master plan aims to deliver in each of the 13 Opportunity Areas. The plan forecasts 30,000 homes and 110,000 jobs for the Isle of Dogs area, 32,000 homes and 50,000 jobs for the Lower Lea Valley area, and 26,500 homes and 16,000 jobs for London Riverside. The ‘City in the East’ master plan was formally launched on Thursday 22nd October at the headquarters of New London Architecture in Bloomsbury. For more information, see GLA’s press release.