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Does Housing Quality Need to Be Part of Manifesto Pledges?

When the Prime Minister called for a snap general election, she made it clear that Brexit was a major part of her decision.

The referendum has featured prominently in the pre-election political discussions, and with less than three weeks to go before the British people head to the polls, Brexit is expected to be an agenda-topper for the main parties.

The popular sentiment is that housing quality and construction should appear in the election manifestos of all the leading parties. The UK construction industry is presently being regarded as a leader in sustainable construction and design, as exemplified by the leading roles played by British companies in the success of high-performance projects.

The Labour Party has vowed to build one million new homes during the next five years, but critics say that no commitment has been provided regarding housing quality , and that the viability of delivering these homes has never been closely examined.

With planning authorities facing increasing demands and reduced funding to be an ongoing problem, it is important that the main political parties give local authorities the capacity and space to take a closer look at development and consider what needs to be achieved at a community scale.


Specialists in Construction Insurance

Positive improvements are also being sought in housing quality , the built environment and the impact they have on people’s lives. Examples include:

  • Making job creation easier
  • Improving design standards
  • Making high quality homes more widely available
  • Improving the conditions in which people live, work, relax, and travel

Hope has been expressed in many quarters that the parties will include this wider perspective in their agenda for industry growth. All the necessary elements are in place for the growth of the building industry, but a long-term view needs to be taken on the viability of development, which is the purpose of having a planning system. Sometimes, however, this viability is only looked at in terms of the site and not the wider community, so the parties should revisit how development is considered.

Many UK residents feel that a long-term view must be taken to ensure that issues such as inter-generational equity are properly considered. The economic, social, and environmental aspects of sustainable development must be addressed together and at the same time. The government must also consider the likelihood of any proposal achieving positive improvements in the quality of both the built environment and people’s lives. This debate may ultimately be used as a base to demonstrate what the country can achieve and increase the quality of UK buildings and communities.

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