“While we’re all accepting the case for more houses, we haven’t really yet embraced the case for better”, said Housing Minister Kit Malthouse MP at CIH’s annual housing conference in Manchester.
Addressing government proposals to build 300,000 new homes a year by the mid-2020s, Malthouse added that until we build homes that people “like the look of”, targets won’t be met.
Last year, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government released a National Planning Policy Framework which, according to Malthouse, gives local authorities the ability to “refuse permission” on poor design.
“We have to provide homes that people will be proud of, that enhances their area. But more fundamentally, we have to build beautiful things to fulfil our part of that promise that we made to future generations that we will leave this country in a better place than we found it”, Malthouse added.
As part of his keynote, the Housing Minister also confirmed a joint government and Barclays investment of £155m to build 660 new homes in Wimbledon and Southampton.
Malthouse also urged local authorities to “let architects in” and referenced Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) as the future to create a more competitive market to build the “considered housing supply that this country needs”.
In a concluding Q&A session, Malthouse also displayed confidence in saying that the next Prime Minister and leader of the Conservative party will prioritise the need to build more affordable housing.