The nation's housing shortage requires innovation to solve it and this proposal to convert ugly out of town retail space to housing merits further examination. It is hard to think what is not to like. Those of us watching the slow creep of development into our green spaces would love the idea, which could in theory at least let us re-use land which might otherwise go to waste. How ironic that those of shopping on line from the comfort of our sofas might in future be doing so inches from where we once dragged our moaning offspring on endless shopping trips!
Share Save Next month will see the publication of a government white paper on new homes. How is it possible to increase housebuilding to the point that it answers the unaffordability problem? Bold thinking is needed, and it remains to be seen whether the bureaucrats will have the imagination to present a radical new vision. But some solutions are available to those with eyes to see. To name just one, retail parks. Redevelop them with blocks of flats, four or five storeys high, around courtyards and gardens, and much of the problem is solved at a stroke.