Tens of thousands of homes will be built on derelict sites as part of a near-£2billion drive by Rishi Sunak to target brownfield land instead of the countryside for housing.
The Chancellor will announce the fund to transform previously developed land equivalent to 2,000 football pitches in Wednesday’s Budget.
In addition, he will unveil plans to spend millions on creating more than 100 ‘pocket parks’ in towns and cities across the country.
Tens of thousands of homes will be built on derelict sites as part of a near-£2billion drive by Rishi Sunak to target brownfield land instead of the countryside for housing
The Budget will focus on ‘looking to the future and building a stronger economy for the British people’, Mr Sunak said last night.
He will also allocate the money available to individual Whitehall departments for the next three years in his Spending Review.
A £1.8billion fund to turn brownfield land into homes will be part of the settlement for Michael Gove’s Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.
About 160,000 homes are expected to be built in England as part of the scheme.
As well as preparing sites for development, the money will be used to provide transport links, schools and public spaces so they can become thriving communities.
The Chancellor will announce the fund to transform previously developed land equivalent to 2,000 football pitches in Wednesday’s Budget
About £300million will be spent by local authorities and regional mayors.
Alongside this, the Chancellor will announce a £9million Levelling Up Parks Fund that will enable local authorities to transform more than 100 neglected urban spaces into ‘pocket parks’ roughly the size of a tennis court.
These green spaces are aimed at improving the physical and mental health of communities by providing a safe place for children to play in as well as somewhere adults can relax.
More than 2.5million people in the UK live more than a ten-minute walk from a green space.
Mr Sunak said last night: ‘We are investing in better quality, safer, greener and more affordable homes to create thriving places where people want to live.
‘One of my favourite pastimes is to go for walks in the park with my family, and I want to make sure everyone has green space on their doorstep to enjoy too.
‘Transforming our unloved and neglected urban spaces will help protect our cherished countryside and green spaces, while improving the physical and mental health of our communities.’
Mr Sunak will also confirm a previously announced £11.5billion pot for affordable housing to provide another 180,000 homes, some of which will go on brownfield sites.
The Government has a target of building 300,000 homes a year by the mid-2020s, with 244,000 constructed last year, the highest since 1987.
At the Tory party conference earlier this month, Mr Gove signalled a huge shift on planning policy as he vowed to focus housebuilding efforts on ‘neglected brownfield sites’.
A £1.8billion fund to turn brownfield land into homes will be part of the settlement for Michael Gove’s Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities
He has also pledged to conduct a review into how a planned shake-up of housebuilding rules can be improved in an attempt to placate Tory MPs.
The Chancellor faces a number of challenges as he prepares his Budget, not least a warning from the Bank of England’s new chief economist that inflation could rise above 5 per cent.
Mr Sunak said yesterday that it would ‘certainly feed into my thinking about what the right approach to the country is’.
He also confirmed public sector workers will discover on Wednesday if they will get a pay rise.
Despite raising national insurance to pay for social care, Mr Sunak said he wanted to be a tax-cutting chancellor – although no major giveaways are expected on Wednesday.
The Daily Mail revealed last week that the Chancellor will use the Budget to slap a tax of between 3 and 5 per cent on the profits of Britain’s biggest housebuilders to recoup some of the costs of fixing the cladding scandal – marking a victory for our campaign on the issue.