Campaigners urge implementation of Greater Manchester Spatial Framework

The UK Government has provided enough certainty for the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework (GMSF) to proceed without delay, according to Housing the Powerhouse.

Housing the Powerhouse is a coalition of housebuilders, land promoters and business voices campaigning in support of the GMSF.

It said that, following the release of updated household forecasts by the UK Government in August 2018, the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) delayed the GMSF, which was scheduled for release in October.

The group said the delay was based on uncertainty over housing figures caused by the household projections and how these relate to a standardised method for calculating housing need introduced by Government earlier in the year (the SOAN methodology – Standardised Objectively Assessed Need).

Last week, Government instructed local authorities to disregard the 2016 household projections released in August 2018 when plan-making, but use instead the earlier 2014-based household projections released in 2016.

Housing the Powerhouse said that, as a result, the uncertainty cited by the GMCA as the reason for delaying the GMSF has been clarified and the process should now proceed.

The Housing the Powerhouse group has released a statement encouraging the GMCA to progress the GMSF without delay, saying: “We welcome the action taken by Government to provide certainty around how housing need is calculated in Greater Manchester.

“The Mayor and GMCA called for urgent clarity on housing figures, and now we have it, so there is no reason for the GMSF to be delayed any further.

“We look forward to the release and consultation upon a refreshed document as soon as possible.

“The Greater Manchester housing package requires a GMSF that plans for 227,000 homes over the plan period.

“The relatively small deal on the table reflects the small uplift on housing delivery proposed by the GMSF, with other regions likely to receive more funding in exchange for greater ambition.

“We stand ready to support a positive GMSF that secures an ambitious deal for the city region.”