A combination of small practices with small, complex sites should be an obvious marriage of opportunity and resource for local authorities, but significant challenges remain. To help, Future of London convened a roundtable with senior representatives from boroughs and SME architectural practices to explore the potential benefits and barriers to working together.
Council-Led Housing Forum
Responding to increasing housing targets, tightening budgets and the desire to retain assets for long-term revenue, local authorities are once again starting to build their own homes.
New approaches such as wholly owned development companies or in-house teams are being set up across the capital, but lack of cross-authority support, capacity and skills is preventing authorities reaching their full potential.
As part of the Mayor’s Building Council Homes for Londoners initiative, this forum is providing technical advice to practitioners involved in the council-led delivery of homes. Boroughs that are pioneering delivery in-house or through housing companies, housing associations and independent experts share skills, experience and lessons learned, including pitfalls to avoid. The Council-Led Housing Forum encourages delegates to share their own experiences to build a strong knowledge base across the forum. The ultimate aim is to speed up delivery.
The first two events allowed practitioners to share their experiences of scaling up and building the right team. Tibbalds Planning and Urban Design kindly facilitated the third event, running an interactive workshop mapping the relationship between housing delivery and planning from early stage discussions to post determination and delivery. The following four sessions were aimed at junior staff involved in direct delivery and walked attendees through the full development management process, from feasibility to handover and aftercare. Most recently, Pollard Thomas Edwards hosted a session on achieving design quality, with workshops facilitated by Municipal housing development consultancy.
Who is the forum for?
These free events are for local authority staff managing housing delivery projects day to day. The programme covers partnerships/special purpose vehicles (i.e. non-estate regeneration) wholly owned companies and direct delivery through Housing Revenue Accounts (HRA).
Borough legal, finance and property teams and Housing Associations are actively encouraged to take part as appropriate.
Download the programme if you would like to find out more about past and future events.
17 July 2019 – Achieving design quality
25 June 2019 – Development management 4: Handover and aftercare
21 May 2019 – Development management. 3: Construction
23 April 2019 – Development management. 2: Project inception and planning
26 March 2019 – Development management. 1: Initial analysis & feasibility
26 February 2019 – Working with planning teams
29 January 2019 – Building the right team
27 November 2018 – Strategic-approaches and scaling up
‘I head up a direct delivery team working in partnership with a London Authority with big ambitions to develop the next generation of council homes. The Council-Led Housing Forum events are helping us to do this, being both insightful and illuminating.’
Meera Bedi, Head of Development (New Build), Barnet Homes
‘Thanks for putting this series on, I think they have been the most relevant and interesting sessions I have ever attended. I really enjoyed the discussion and I have gained some great tips to supplement my knowledge.’
Simon Griffin, Project Manager, City of Westminster
If you’d like to learn more, contact Visakha Sri Chandrasekera, Council-Led Housing Forum Manager