Excessively restrictive regulations, overstretched and obstructive council officials, and neglectful and absentee landlords are all barriers to creating a brighter, sustainable future for much-loved town centres.
From Canada to Montana to New Zealand, centre-right parties have found different ways to break the grip of NIMBY gatekeepers and build the homes people need – and are reaping the electoral reward.
The row over nutrient neutrality rules was an important test of the Opposition’s willingness to confront the vetocracy that ensures we get nothing built – and they failed it.
In my area, ill-judged EU rules have helped see all development blocked for nine years, exacerbating the housing crisis whilst doing little to actually protect the environment.
When our political class feels that it cannot act, it cobbles together ad-hoc explanations for why its apathy is actually cunning strategy, hard-headed pragmatism, or just somehow grown-up.
“Housing policy – the building of new homes, the stewardship of existing properties, the planning of our towns, the fundamental landscape of our lives – requires long-term thinking. And a long-term plan.”
We need to stop putting sticking plasters on the problem of a shortage of houses and use positive tax nudges to do some of the legwork.
Britain missed its chance to harness her oil and gas wealth as Norway did – but we have another valuable asset portfolio, with a record of long-termist management, close at hand.
New rules threaten to give England a generation of houses that are uglier and less popular than those we have built historically.
Pierre Pierre has gone beyond wonkish economic arguments to spell out the moral, social, and conservative consequences of the crisis.
Nor does the PM show any sign of knowing how to keep his followers’ spirits up during the conquest of inflation.
The Prime Minister says housing starts are double the number they were under Labour.
Full-fat planning reform may be off the table, but there are plenty of sensible interventions the Government could make before the next election.
As Ed Miliband learned in 2015, it doesn’t matter how popular your policies are individually if voters don’t buy into your broader offer.