100 signatures reached
To: Manchester Council
Make housing developers be transparent in Manchester
Require developers to make their viability assessments public if they claim they cannot meet council targets of affordable housing in new developments.
Why is this important?
Current planning law states that if a developer will make less than 20% profit on a new development, they can ignore a council's regulations about building affordable and social housing.
Leaked documents from several developers have shown that the maths they use to work out their profit margins are purposefully misleading, allowing them to claim they will make less than 20% profit on a development by undervaluing the prices of the houses they will sell and over-costing the labour.
To combat this Islington, Greenwich, Lambeth and Bristol councils have introduced a policy that forces developers "viability assessments" to be made public.
By bringing these dodgy maths into the public domain, Councils, campaigning groups and individuals will be able to hold developers to account and force them to use more honest maths.
Manchester City Council has scandalously allowed Circle Square, on Oxford Road's former BBC site, to create 677 apartments but require no affordable housing. Similarly, First Street South, near the Mancunian Way, will comprise 624 new flats, but requires no affordable housing. Either of these locations could have housed the new MMU campus in Hulme, but instead the Council GAVE land to MMU - land which was previously covered in trees, grass and wildflowers.
It's time that Manchester City Council stood up to these developers instead of cosying up to them - close the "viability" get-out clause!
I'm not the only one who is angry with the Council over this issue: