Shortfall of more than 1,200 affordable homes built in York over last three years

There is a shortfall of 1,256 affordable houses built in York in the last three years, according to the city council’s housing executive.

Coun Michael Pavlovic, executive member for housing at the City of York Council, outlined the need for affordable housing - valued for let or sale at least 20 per cent below the market price - in York at the full council meeting on Thursday, March 21.

He said that in the last three years, only 463 affordable houses were delivered, 1,256 freer than needed according to the council's development plan - the ‘local plan’ - which they hope to adopt soon.

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“The lack of sufficient affordable housing delivery is a growing concern," a report by Coun Pavlovic read.


“The local plan process identified an annual need for 573 new affordable homes, whereas the past three years saw only 463 in total delivered.

“Unless we can address this, both through those delivered through developer contributions and an increase in those built by social housing providers, the already challenging situation will rapidly become a significant risk to the future prosperity of the city as a whole.”

Part of Coun Pavlovic’s plan to improve access to affordable housing in York is revisiting the council’s housing delivery programme.

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A development on Ordnance Lane was redesigned to make it 100 per cent affordable, increasing the density to 101 affordable homes.

Previous plans included just 49.

The first homes on this development should be visible by the end of 2024.

Another development, the Willow House scheme, is currently in design and should be submitted to planning later in the year but work won’t start until 2025.

Other schemes will also contribute to adding to the affordable housing available in York.

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In February, Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust and Gateway Developments jointly submitted plans to build 114 new and affordable homes off Sim Balk Lane in York.

David Boyes-Watson, deputy director for development & asset management at Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust said: “This site on Sim Balk Lane can help deliver vitally needed affordable and accessible homes for local residents.

“With a significant shortfall of affordable housing and many struggling to access specially equipped and purpose-built accessible accommodation locally, our proposal will help to meet this growing need.”

Meanwhile, the York Central development behind York Railway Station will have 2,500 homes built on its brownfield land, at least 500 of which will be affordable, but is still in development.

The City of York Council has also committed to delivering 4,000 affordable homes over the next 15 years, around 266 a year.

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