City of London,

City approves biggest house-building programme since the Barbican

The City of London Corporation, local authority for the Square Mile, has committed to build 3,700 new homes by 2025, in what will be the biggest house-building programme since the completion of the Barbican estate in 1976.

The homes will be built on the City’s existing housing estates and land outside the Square Mile. Some will be social housing, and some will be offered at market rate. The City of London Corporation will look at all available options to determine how best to build the housing – this may include working with developers, or looking at shared ownership and government schemes.

Speaking as the City’s highest decision-making body, the Court of Common Council, passed a policy document committing to the programme, Policy Chairman Mark Boleat said: “London’s housing crisis has become a threat to its economic competitiveness. Without truly affordable housing, we will no longer be able to maintain the diversity of London’s communities, which is an integral part of London’s success as a global city. When people think of City workers, they often think only of bankers and lawyers, but without security guards, receptionists and coffee-shop baristas, the City would cease to function. If workers on low to middle incomes cannot find affordable housing, then working in the City will cease to be an economically sensible option.”

The City’s elected members have been concerned about rising rents and the dwindling supply of affordable homes, and the City opened Horace Jones House in Southwark, earlier in 2015 to help meet the need for social housing. However, according to new research by the City of London Corporation, in 2014 even the cheapest 10% of houses were only affordable to the highest-earning 25% of workers, which shows that there is a need for housing provision across the board.

The City of London Corporation has long been a provider of social housing, and currently owns social housing estates in seven London boroughs: the City, Islington, Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Lewisham, Southwark, and Lambeth. There are 2,000 homes on these sites and the new policy suggests that 700 more could be built.

For more information about the City’s plans, please see the full court policy paper.

For more information about the City’s existing housing stock and housing strategy please see our housing page.  

Media Enquiries

Bella Longman, Media Officer – Planning & Financial Services, City of London Corporation

Tel: 020 7332 1906 / Mobile: 07809 334 327


Rachel Tooze, Media Officer – Supporting London’s Communities, City of London Corporation

Tel- 020 7332 1528/ Mobile- 07738 614 921


About the City of London Corporation 

The City of London Corporation provides local government and policing services for the financial and commercial heart of Britain, the 'Square Mile'. In addition, the City Corporation has three roles:

(1) We support London’s communities by working in partnership with neighbouring boroughs on economic regeneration, education and skills projects. In addition, the City of London Corporation’s charity City Bridge Trust makes grants of more than £15 million annually to charitable projects across London and we also support education with three independent schools, three City Academies, a primary school and the world-renowned Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

(2) We also help look after key London’s heritage and green spaces including Tower Bridge, Museum of London, Barbican Arts Centre, City gardens, Hampstead Heath, Epping Forest, Burnham Beeches, and important ‘commons’ in south London.

(3) We also support and promote the ‘City’ as a world-leading financial and business hub, with outward and inward business delegations, high-profile civic events and research-driven policies all reflecting a long-term approach.