Council uses Section 106 to make developer build homes for private rent

For the first time, a local council is using a Section 106 agreement requiring a developer to build homes for private rent on one of its sites as a condition of planning.

Wandsworth Council has given Bellway Homes planning permission for 510 homes on a landmark site in London on the basis that 114 of the homes will be for private rent.

Experts say the condition could become the “new normal”.

The development is to be on the south bank of the Thames near Battersea, on the former site of Christie’s Fine Art Warehouse in Nine Elms.

Section 106 agreements are usually used to make developers include “affordable” housing on their sites – often at a proportion of 30–40%. These homes are then sold at a discount to a housing association.

Wandsworth is also obliging Bellway to provide 76 units of affordable homes on the site, and additionally to contribute £10m to off-site affordable housing schemes.

The private rented homes will be offered to Wandsworth residents on five-year tenancies.

The Christie’s development forms part of the regeneration of Nine Elms where, of the 18,000 homes to be completed, around 3,000 will be “affordable” as required by a Section 106 condition.

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