Housing secretary says ministers will enact 'almost all' of Beauty Commission's recommendations

The government will be responding to the Building Better Building Beautiful Commission report 'later this year' and will be looking to enact 'almost all' of its recommendations, housing secretary Robert Jenrick said yesterday.

Housing secretary Robert Jenrick at the Building Beautiful Commission report launch last month. Pic: MHCLG
Housing secretary Robert Jenrick at the Building Beautiful Commission report launch last month. Pic: MHCLG

The government-commissioned review made a number of key recommendations in its final report published last monthincluding a fast-track planning process for well-designed schemes and the expanded use of design codes.

Speaking at an event hosted by social enterprise the Create Streets Foundation at the House of Lords, Jenrick said the government welcomed the commission's findings and would be looking to "accept as many recommendations as possible".

He said. "Almost all of them we want to pass into law and regulations as quickly as we can.

"We hope this will lead to a real sea change to the quality of homes we build in this country.

"I do sincerely believe that the tide has turned and that the ruination of the countryside and brutalist architecture of the past is receding as more and more people and developers and councils understand the value of having good quality development in places we all want to live."

Speaking at the same event, Nicholas Boys Smith, director of Create Streets and co-chair of the Building Better Building Beautiful Commission, called for a more ambitious planning policy to ensure good design.

"The current National Planning Policy Framework only says that new development should not make things worse – that’s not good enough," he said.

"We are more prosperous than we were 50, 70 or 100 years ago and we really need to demand more of ourselves as a society."

Jenrick previously committed the government to implementing the commission's recommendation for a "fast track for beauty" in the planning system and said many of the suggested planning changes could be made "quite quickly" by amending the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

An analysis article examining the implications of the fast-track proposal can be found here.

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