British Property Award Winner 2017
British Ministers have pledged to work with the building industry to
make sure that new homes embrace the latest innovations to make sure
they are the best quality properties possible.
Secretary of State for Housing Sajid Javid and Housing Minister Dominic
Rabb have called for closer links between Government and industry to
deliver well-designed homes.
They told the first ever Design Quality Conference that there will be
investment of £1 billion via the Home Building Fund to develop new,
modern approaches to design and construction. They believe ideas can be
found from other countries, such as Australia, Norway and Sweden.
They also want technology to take a front seat. For example using
Virtual Reality (VR) technology to win the confidence of communities
before a single brick is laid. By visualising proposed new housing from
the neighbour or home buyer’s perspective, communities will be able to
see how development can visually contribute to the area from an early
stage, even before planning permission has been granted.
The conference heard that recent research shows that more than seven out
of 10 people would support new residential development if buildings are
well-designed and in keeping with their local area.
When it comes to funding some eight developments across 11 local
authorities have been backed with Government money to use modern methods
of construction such as modular homes to build good quality homes,
using the latest techniques, whilst helping to speed up housing
Based on an Australian model, the Government will urge councils to set
their own design quality standards, giving communities the ability to
better reflect their own unique character in local planning policy.
‘Our homes are the making of all of us, which is why today’s event on
raising the bar on the quality of new homes is so important. This
Government is determined to make sure that high quality design is the
norm rather than the exception,’ said Javid.
High quality design is important, according to Housing Minister Dominic
Raab, and he said that the conference is an important milestone in
meeting the vision of better quality homes that people want to live in.
‘Industry leaders, including local authority planners, developers and
design professionals, attending the Design Quality Conference will share
their expertise to ensure how homes look becomes just as important as
the number delivered,’ he explained.
‘Ministers will focus on how developers can use better quality design in
order to win over both communities and new generations of first time
buyers, who expect the highest quality homes before parting with their
hard earned deposits,’ he added.
He pointed out that when things go wrong, the Government has also
proposed strengthening ways for home buyers to complain when their home
hasn’t been built satisfactorily with these new measures recently being
subject to a consultation.
In addition the recently published draft National Planning Policy
Framework, also out to consultation, outlines requirements for design
guides and codes to feature prominently in new Local Plans, significant
consideration to be given to existing local character as well as setting
out the density of developments that meet the needs and expectations of
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