CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

We’re fighting to redress affordable homes balance

07 July, 2017

• ANDREW Bosi is incorrect about the extent of deregulation of the planning system (‘Red tape’ that saves lives, June 30).

The council’s planning team maintains and regularly reviews overarching planning documents that help shape the future of our borough – and these are put out for public consultation and comment.

The department also draws up planning briefs for specific pieces of land – we are finalising one now for the site of the former Holloway Prison.

As for challenging developers on how much affordable housing they say they can build on a site, we certainly do. Just last month we won a landmark planning appeal case, backing our refusal of a developer’s plans that had ignored our policy for building the maximum reasonable amount of affordable housing on a new-build site in Parkhurst Road.

Far from leaving it to the market, we are actively fighting to help redress the balance of housing provision in Islington.

I would also like to reassure residents that we always check the quality of major works on our estates and ensure our contractors complete it to a high standard.

The fire risk assessments (FRAs) for Haslam Close, as with all our housing estates, are up-to-date and comply with all regulations (Disturbing findings from our estate’s fire risks audit, June 30).

In the case of Haslam Close, FRAs were undertaken in 2016 and deemed to be the lowest risk. The recommended actions from that report have either already been completed, are in progress or will be undertaken as part of a planned programme of improvements.

As always, the safety of our residents is our number one priority.

CLLR DIARMAID WARD
Labour executive member for housing and development, Islington Council

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