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Creating a ‘21st Century Domesday Book’ for London

In February, George Osborne announced the creation of the London Land Commission in a joint speech with London Mayor Boris Johnson. The Chancellor went further in the Budget, committing £1m a year to the Commission.

In conjunction with law firm Berwin Leighton Paisner, we have published ‘From Wasted Space to Living Place’, the first analysis of the task ahead, assessing the opportunities and challenges facing the Commission in delivering much-needed housing in the capital.

The Commission is tasked with developing a comprehensive database of surplus public land in London – a 21st Century Domesday Book. This was a key ask of London First in our 2014 report ‘Home Truths‘, which set out 12 steps for solving London’s Housing Crisis.

The report argues that this presents “a tremendous opportunity to make real inroads into London’s housing shortfall” when combined with new powers in the recent Infrastructure Act.

However, it also concludes that the Commission has big hurdles to overcome, arguing that it must have real power rather than becoming a talking shop.

Contact: Jonathan Seager,

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