Proposal to increase borough's new homes
This month, the government published new proposals for determining the number of additional homes that local authority areas like Epsom and Ewell will be required to deliver.
Within Epsom & Ewell this would mean 604 new homes per year plus the necessary infrastructure, schools, etc.
Household projection data published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) helps determine the housing target that the government sets for each local authority area. These figures will be used by the council as part of the Local Plan which sets planning policy and the amount of housing and associated infrastructure development in the area.
The latest projections (2018) published by ONS showed a significant reduction in the projected growth in household numbers in the borough. Using the government’s existing method of calculation, this would have resulted in a significant reduction in the borough’s housing target – from 579 homes per year, to just 215 homes per annum.
Councillor David Reeve, Chair of the Licensing and Planning Policy Committee said “Our residents expect the Local Plan for the local area to be evidence based and for the housing target to be reflective of local needs. We wrote to the government last month to ask them to adopt the latest ONS projections and accept that, based on the evidence, Epsom and Ewell should only require the much lower target of 215 new homes a year.”
This month the government announced proposals to fundamentally change the way they calculate the housing target for each local authority area. Their proposed changes would lead to an even higher government imposed target for Epsom and Ewell of 604 new homes per year.
Councillor David Reeve added “We are really concerned that these latest government proposals to change the method of calculating the housing target would, if approved, lead to an even larger requirement for new homes in the borough, when the evidence using the current method of calculation together with the latest ONS data provides for a much lower housing target.”
The council will be preparing its response to the government on its proposed changes to the way that housing targets are calculated.