By Marcus Leach
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has reached an agreement with the Government to deliver a four-year affordable homes programme worth over £4 billion for the capital, which will provide homes for around 250,000 Londoners.
This includes a substantial £1.7 billion affordable housing settlement for this spending round that will unlock a further £2.5 billion of private investment and will complete 53,000 affordable homes in the capital by 2015.
The Mayor has also negotiated with the Coalition to ensure the programme provides a range of rents in London to reflect the unique needs of the capital.
The Government’s new Affordable Rent programme now allows registered housing providers to charge up to 80 per cent of market rent, but the Mayor has secured an agreement that rents in London will only be charged at an average of 65 per cent of market rent, and will not exceed new benefit caps.
The 2011-15 programme will provide a major boost to the construction sector and the London economy, delivering a significant proportion of family-sized affordable housing and a wide range of locally supported housing and regeneration priorities.
It will also see a borough-led new build programme in Camden, Hackney, Newham, Wandsworth, Hillingdon, Ealing and Barking and Dagenham. The new homes will meet the Mayor's Housing Design Standards, and contractors will be encouraged to pay the London Living Wage.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said:
“In these tough economic times, this is a really good deal. I am pleased that the hard work of the GLA, the boroughs and the providers has paid off and we have agreed a programme which will deliver high quality, affordable housing for around a quarter of a million Londoners.
"This new programme will provide a major boost to London's construction sector which is so important to the capital and the UK ’s economy, securing thousands of jobs and new training opportunities.”
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