Increase in new affordable homes and workspaces as planning service delivers for Hackney

Over 45% of all homes granted planning permission in major developments in Hackney in 2020-21 will be affordable, new figures released by the Council show.

Between April 2020 and March 2021, 998 homes were granted planning permission – despite the challenges caused by the pandemic lockdowns, which forced planning committee meetings online.

Once built, 445 of these will be affordable, including 217 for social rent and the remainder other affordable tenures such as shared ownership and living rent homes.

Meanwhile, the proportion of all completed new homes in Hackney that are affordable has more than doubled from 9% in 2018-19 to 21% in 2020-21. The proportion of all affordable homes available at the most affordable social rent level has increased from 10% in 2018-19 to 65% in 2020-21, with 128 social rent homes completed last year.

The data has been released in the Council’s Planning Service Annual Monitoring Report, which monitors the effectiveness of the Council’s Planning Service and local planning policies. Other highlights from the annual report for the period 2020-21 include:

  • Eight new developments with affordable workspace granted permission, up from six in 2019-20
  • 22,000 sqm of new office space completed, accommodating more than 2,000 new jobs
  • 7,500 sqm of new retail space completed
  • 96% of the Government's housing target for Hackney met between 2018-19 and 2020-21, up from the previous figure of 90%
  • £11.6m of Section 106 planning contributions received from developers to be invested in Hackney
  • £4.6m of Section 106 planning contributions spent on improvements to libraries, schools, health facilities, public spaces and jobs and skills services in 2020-21
  • Five parks in Hackney received additional investment as a result of planning requirements – Shoreditch Park, St Thomas Recreation Ground, Daubeney Fields, Shepherdess Walk and Fairchild’s Gardens
Cllr Guy Nicholson, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Delivery, Inclusive Economy and Regeneration

Planning is often criticised as well as complimented, but this report shows how the Council’s planning service has unlocked new development and investment to deliver for Hackney – from new homes and community infrastructure, to workspaces and public spaces.

These outcomes are the result of a professional service and sound, strong and proactive planning policies that ensure Hackney gets the new developments the borough needs and that local communities are the first to benefit.

It highlights how Hackney’s economy has been supported to thrive and the local business helped to grow through permissions that will deliver more retail, more office space and more affordable workspace.

It also shows how our planning policies are complementing our own plans to deliver 1,000 new Council homes for social rent by 2026 – with a new requirement for every residential development towards providing new affordable homes in Hackney, and developments of 10 homes or more expected to provide on-site affordable housing.

Cllr Guy Nicholson, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Delivery, Inclusive Economy and Regeneration