41,000 homes 'could be built on London rooftops'

News that research has found that as many as 41,000 new homes could be built in central London using rooftop development space feature in today's newspaper round-up.

The Telegraph reports that "property agency Knight Frank found that developing homes on top of existing buildings could result in an additional 28 million square feet of residential space, with a potential value of £51 billion." The newspaper says that Knight Frank "has developed a tool called Skyward which analyses data from the Ordnance Survey, cross referencing Land Registry data to assess ownership and data from Historic England to filter out listed buildings".

Evening Standard columnist James Ashton calls for the state to become more active in the housing market. Ashton says that the "10 companies including Persimmon which build 60 per cent of new homes are not the answer. They rightly prize shareholder value over housebuilding volume". He says that it is "much better to channel state funds directly into bricks and mortar instead of executives’ pockets".

The Times (subscription required) reports that "Britain’s third biggest housebuilder has dismissed suggestions that the housing market slowed down during the autumn". The newspaper says that Taylor Wimpey "said that its sales were running at the same level as last year, rather contradicting Persimmon and Redrow, two of its rivals, which upset investors last week with trading updates that appeared to suggest a fall in sales volumes".

The Guardian reports that the "vast majority of UK city dwellers would support their taxes being spent on building cycle lanes, believing their city would be a better place to live and work if more people swapped their cars for bicycles, according to a study". The newspaper says that "Sustrans, the cycling and walking advocacy group, found that although just 6 per cent of people commute to work by bike, 75 per cent would like to see more money spent on cycling infrastructure and 78 per cent support building more protected bike lanes, even if this could mean less space for other road traffic".


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