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Javid and Raab emphasise need for good housing design

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Sajid Javid and Dominic Raab have spoken of the importance of building top quality homes at pace.

At a conference on planning and design in London yesterday housing and communities secretary Mr Javid and housing minister Mr Raab emphasised the importance of quality building design in their respective speeches, adding that improving housing quality is a government priority.

“First time buyers are toiling harder than ever to get onto the housing ladder; it’s only right that they should expect higher quality. It is essential for the vibrant and resilient communities we want to build,” Mr Raab said, adding that good design is “interlinked with the number of homes we want to build”.

Speaking at the Design Quality Conference at the Institute of Engineering and Technology in London, Mr Raab said the government would put “high quality design at the heart of what we do”.

As part of the government’s commitment to good quality, the newly-minted housing agency Homes England signed a memorandum of understanding with the charity Design Council.

Nick Walkley, chief executive for Homes England, said: “Homes England is committed to delivering high-quality places and promoting well-designed housing developments. We intend to expand our own design capability and the partnership with the Design Council will mean we can go further to ensure that quality is integral to the creation of new places and redevelopment of our towns and cities.”

In closing the conference, Mr Javid cited England’s “rich history of urban design”, adding that architectural design from the Georgian, Edwardian and Victorian periods “is the envy of the world”.

Mr Javid said: “In shaping homes we’re also shaping lives; we owe it to generations to come to build a place that lifts the human spirit. Britain has a rich history of urban design which is the envy of the world. What will our legacy today look like?”

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