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London to pilot new development funding model

London is set to pilot a new development rights auction model for funding infrastructure projects.

Announced as part of a new London Devolution Agreement in the spring Budget, the new model will provide significant funding towards future infrastructure developments – improving building speeds and reducing reliance on government funds.

The pilot will be jointly evaluated by London authorities (GLA, TfL and local councils) and the government to review its effectiveness and determine whether a similar model could be applied to other infrastructure projects.

In addition to this infrastructure boost, the government also committed to working further with the mayor’s office to ensure both the mayor and TfL have the power necessary to tackle transport congestion.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan welcomed the news, believing the agreement to be a major step towards protecting the capital’s economy from the uncertainty of Brexit.

“I am pleased that the chancellor has recognised that giving London more control is vital if we are to protect jobs and investment in the aftermath of Brexit,” said Mr Khan.

“Giving London the ability to invest more in building crucial new infrastructure and devolving control of business rates will help increase economic growth and improve productivity.”

However, the mayor did express his disappointment that the chancellor of the exchequer Philip Hammond did not provide additional backing for Crossrail 2.

Earlier this month, an engineering consultant warned that Britain would need to recruit 400,000 new workers each year to build enough homes and infrastructure.

This followed warnings from the London mayor that a hard Brexit could have a “crippling” effect on construction in London.

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