This article

In this issue

Housing Market Renewal in an era of new housing supply

Ed Ferrari


In the UK, New Labour’s housing policy appears to have moved into a new phase. A concern with new housing supply has supplanted a previous focus on renewal and regeneration. This calls into question the continued relevance of large scale renewal programmes such as Housing Market Renewal (HMR). This paper briefly reviews the rationale for setting up the HMR Pathfinders and charts some aspects of their progress since 2003. Positive signs of change are apparent throughout HMR areas, although whether this can be ascribed to Pathfinder activity is unclear. Some of the reasons for market change are undoubtedly related to wider changes in the market, notably the rapid growth of speculative investment activity. The paper concludes that, while, superficially, HMR may now appear incongruous with the new focus on housing supply, there is insufficient evidence that lasting change in low demand markets has yet been brought about and that consequently the premature scaling back of the programme would be ill-advised.


DOI: 10.3351/ppp.0001.0003.0003