National Housing Audit To Provide New Build Development Baseline Standard

Whilst the Government remain committed to achieving 300,000 new build properties per year within the next five years, a new audit is looking at how the design of residential developments has changed in the past ten years in order to help create a baseline standard for new build developments in the future.

A new National Housing Audit is set to assess at least 100 large-scale developments that will analyse the design quality of external residential environments in a bid to understand best practice within the design and construction of new build homes in the UK.

The audit will focus on enough recent developments to enable assessors to make comparisons between regions, analyse the different approaches of delivery and suggest how future developments could design their properties to ensure they are accepted by local communities.

The Place Alliance (UCL) and CPRE, with the support of Home Builders Federation, Urban Design Group, Civic Voice, Academy of Urbanism, Design Council, UK Green Building Council, and Institute for Highways and Transportation have launched the national housing audit with the hope of providing evidence that can be used as a framework of best practice to help future building projects.

The audit is set to complete in the autumn of 2019 and will be used within the government’s Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission.

Professor Matthew Carmona, of UCL who is leading the research, said:

“We know much about the numbers of houses we are delivering nationally, but almost nothing about their quality.

“This housing design audit represents an ambitious attempt to address that gap and provide a baseline from which to make more informed judgements in the future about the standard of housing design that we should be expecting, both nationally and locally.”

Paul Miner, who leads on strategic planning at the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE), commented:

“We are pleased to be supporting the first ever national housing design audit. We need to build many more new homes but we should also expect future housing developments to meet high design standards, not just in terms of appearance but also in helping us to move towards a zero-carbon economy. We are particularly delighted to see the strong cross-sector support that this important piece of work has received.”

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