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Sustainable Communities Plan

Volume 407: debated on Monday 23 June 2003

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To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will make a statement on the factors which underlay the decisions to designate certain areas as South-East Growth Areas in the Sustainable Communities Plan. [120313]

In London and the south-east housing demand continues to outstrip supply. Delivery of annual rates in Regional Planning Guidance for the South East (RPG9) for the 15 years from 2001 to 2016 would provide for 930 thousand households. The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister's latest household projections, published in October 1999, show that in the RPG9 area the number of additional households likely to form over these years is 1.1 million.In 2001 RPG9 identified four areas for potential housing growth; Ashford, the Thames Gateway, Milton Keynes and South Midlands, and the London-Stansted-Cambridge corridor. These areas were chosen as all were considered to have the potential to accommodate significant further growth, within sustainable communities, and the growth area studies were commissioned to evaluate this. The additional growth in these areas will make better use of land and will reduce the amount of greenfield land required for future growth.