Mayor of London criticises lack of affordable housing for St George's Hospital site development
PUBLISHED: 15:00 06 August 2016
Plans to build 279 homes on a former hospital site are in doubt after the Mayor of London criticised the development's lack of affordable housing.
A stage one report from City Hall commends plans for the former St George’s Hospital, Suttons Lane, Hornchurch, for not impacting the green belt, but states the developer’s offer of 15 per cent affordable housing is too low.
The planning application submitted by NHS Property Services – and approved by Havering Council in June – will now require amendments before the Greater London Authority’s stage two assessment sees London Mayor Sadiq Khan make a final decision.
The GLA report states: “The mayor considered that the application does not comply with the London Plan.
“In particular, the mayor expressed serious concerns with the low level of affordable housing proposed on the site, which represents redundant public sector land.
“The offer of 15 per cent affordable housing is supported by a viability assessment, however this offer is considered low.
“The applicant’s viability report should therefore be independently assessed on behalf of Havering Council to ensure the maximum is being achieved on-site and the findings shared with GLA officers prior to the stage two referral.”
The plans for the site also include an application for a multi-million pound health centre to provide medical facilities for the new homes.
An NHS Property Services spokeswoman said: “The site is in the designated green belt and green belt policy is set out at a national level in the National Planning Policy Framework and National Planning Policy Guidance.
“We have worked closely with Havering Council to develop a scheme that is compliant with both local and national planning policy and that will not harm the openness of the green belt in this location.
We look forward to working with the Greater London Authority’s comments on the applications in due course.”