City Housing Focus Group
Living in Preston
We want to look at how residential accommodation might develop in Preston in such a way that it adds as much as it can to the life of the city.
Preston is alive with residential development. With hundreds of houses currently under construction on the outskirts of the city and hundreds of flats either under consideration or on site in the city centre.
In addition, Preston City Council’s policies and initiatives are being reviewed and created at the moment, particularly as far as housing is concerned. Now is the time when the city can ask itself how these homes should be shaped.
This might start from a series of questions:
- Is a build to rent investor model creating one and two bedroom units the best way to encourage city centre living or is it just the fastest?
- If city centre living should appeal to a broad cross section of the people who live in Preston - that is different family models, generations and cultures - what models of housing should be created to cater for them?
- In a small city where it is possible to live 5 minutes’ walk from the heart of the city centre and 5 minutes’ walk from the countryside, why wouldn’t families want to live centrally. Can Preston show that it has something different to offer with its size and setting?
- With Preston’s economic model becoming nationally recognised and the catastrophic state of housing nationally, is there a chance to look at models of tenure which address faults in our housing system. Can we find a model of housing which allows families to live in secure, affordable accommodation which meets their needs?
- Can we answer these questions in a way which would start to offer the possibility of living sustainably in the city and encourage a mix of ages and family groups?
The city council wrestle with these problems day to day but we as businesses have a different perspective and a different set of contacts and possibilities. If we can work with Preston City Council to create a consensus then we might begin to influence how we develop housing in our city.
Who should join this group?
Housing affects everyone and we do not see this group formed by people from a property or construction background. We are looking for people from any business background who feel strongly about this and want to explore those possibilities.