In March, The Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage released a consultation paper which outlined an approach to housing that could move away from apartment developments, which were becoming less and less viable for developers.
In principle, we were supportive of flexibility in housing. We did have concerns about further centralisation of power to the minister; the excessive densities that we feared might become minima rather than maxima; and that some of the standards of privacy and daylighting might lead to poor development.
Below is our observation to the Minister.
A new consultation paper has just been published and some of our fears have been realised. The reduction of subsidiarity for local authorities, the mis-understanding of how developers see density and the introduction of the new term "project proposer" in the three policy items that effectively overrule any plan-led criteria, will,we fear, lead to further confusion and more developer-led planning. We will respond to the new consultation document shortly.