Mayor vows to protect London’s Green Belt
Mayor Sadiq Khan has strengthened the commitment to protect London’s Green Belt and to make London more than 50 per cent green by 2050.
Proposals to strengthen safeguards for the Green Belt - vital green land within and surrounding the capital - are contained within his draft London Plan, a broad plan to shape the way the capital develops over the next 20-25 years.
Building the tens of thousands of homes London needs to meet demand can be undertaken without sacrificing the Green Belt, the Mayor said.
Alternatives include requiring developers to focus on brownfield land, making town centres denser, and being more creative about developing the hundreds of small sites across the capital.
The draft London Plan also includes guidelines for increasing ‘green infrastructure’ in streets and developments - such as by planting street trees and installing green roofs, green walls and rain gardens.
"London needs 66,000 new homes every year to meet its increasing need and put right years of underinvestment. But development must not be done at any cost: the Green Belt is the lungs of the capital and must be protected,” the Mayor said.
"Since I took office I have refused a number of developments which would have caused harm to the Green Belt. With my new London Plan I’m sending a clear message to developers that building on or near the Green Belt must respect and protect this vital natural resource,” he said.
London’s Green Belt makes up almost a quarter of the capital’s land area. It helps to improve air quality, reduces the risk and impact of flooding, and provides important habitats for London’s wildlife.
The Mayor plans to work with boroughs and other partners to enhance the vital Green Belt and ensure that the public retain access.
Earlier this year Sadiq announced his ambition for London to become the UK’s first National Park City, which includes increasing the capital’s green cover to more than 50 per cent by 2050.