Alarm at looming housing shortfall

editorial image
Have your say

Sheffield could need 2,000 new homes every year between now and 2066 to avoid a housing crisis, research shows.

Some 500,000 extra people - equal to the city’s current population - may need homes over the next 52 years, according to estimates, creating a need for 100,000 new houses.

Yet despite talk of a construction boom, at current rates the city will fall far short, according to Spawforths, an independent planning practice.

It has just run four housing debates in Sheffield and Leeds attended by 800 people and sponsored by organisations including the University of Sheffield, Sheffield Hallam University and Harworth Estates.

Adrian Spawforth, managing director, said: “We are running into the current housing crisis with our eyes wide open. In years to come it will be legitimate for future generations to turn to their parents and grandparents and state, quite accurately, that we placed our own personal, short term needs ahead of theirs - that it was not politically expedient or was not in the best interests of our own amenity or existing property prices to do what needed to be done.”

Sheffield’s Local Plan, which will be published next year, is likely to confirm an annual housing target of 2,000 homes until 2066, he added.

“That commitment would require at least 60 housing developments being built concurrently throughout the plan period.”

But at current rates the region will face a shortfall of 200,000 homes by just 2031.

Paul Bedwell, of Spawforths, added: “Delivering the homes we need is fundamental to the economic growth aspirations for Sheffield City Region.”

The Making Places debates featured leaders from organisations including Shelter, Barratt Homes, Taylor Wimpey and Urban Splash.