INQUIRY: Rate of house building may need to double

THE rate of new homes being built in Boston may have to double in the next 20 years if population projections are correct.

Estimates show that if the borough continues to grow at its current rate, there will be an increase of more than 20,000 people to cater for by 2031.

Steve Lumb, head of planning and strategy for the borough council, said the current rate of building - about 250 homes a year – would not be able to cater for the perceived growth, and the rate would have to more than double – to about 600 a year.

Work would also be needed to build new roads, doctors’ surgeries and shops.

However, Mr Lumb described the figures as ‘a big assumption’, saying the increase was based on job availability continuing, and added there was a lot more to understand in planning terms

Responding to claims that ‘a new town’ would be required to cope with the population increase, Mr Lumb said: “If these migration projections prove correct we are looking at a 23,000 rise in population. But this is presuming migration levels will increase in the way they are now.

“It’s assuming jobs will continue, and given economics we would suggest that at the moment that is unlikely.

“There are a lot of questions if we plan for these numbers now.”

Issues will considered in a new joint local plan with South Holland District Council.