Empty garages owned by Brent Council ‘could be turned into 519 new homes’
PUBLISHED: 10:48 17 January 2017 | UPDATED: 11:20 17 January 2017
Brent Council owns more than 1,000 disused garages which could be converted into hundreds of new homes, a report claims today.
According to the research, 1,234 out of the 1,729 garages in Brent are empty and could be turned into 519 one-bedroom flats to tackle the housing crisis.
The data, obtained from Freedom Information requests from property crowdfunding platform Property Partner, also says the council had the fourth highest number of unused garages in London at 71 per cent.
In addition the report claimed just 10 per cent of the town hall-owned garages in Brent were rented out to council tenants.
Dan Gandesha, CEO of Property Partner, said: “If a significant number of council garages, which are part of housing estates, are not even rented to those who should have a right to them – local authority tenants – then it could be argued that this is a wasted opportunity.
“When we have a crisis in affordable housing not just in the capital but in the UK, it begs the question whether councils in Britain should either sell off the land for development or build new homes themselves.”
A spokeswoman for Brent Housing Partnership, who manage garages on behalf of Brent Council, said: “Brent Housing Partnership (BHP) have been working with Brent Council to build much needed homes for people in Brent. “Many of the empty garages in the borough are on estates which are being regenerated. In other areas we have been working on a programme to build homes on the sites of empty garages and are seeking planning permission on further sites.
“We have received funding from the Greater London Authority and Brent Council to deliver 700 council homes by 2019 and are on target to achieving this goal.”