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Cambridge City Council

Statement on housing in Cambridge

3 August 2022

In response to an enquiry from the media we issued the following response about housing in Cambridge

A spokesperson for Cambridge City Council said: “The Census has revealed that the official population of Cambridge has increased from around 123,900 to 145,700 (an increase of 17.6%) since the previous UK Census in 2011. The council recognises the pressure that this growth puts on the housing market and the affordability of homes to those living and working in Cambridge. We also have around 2000 people on our housing register desperately in need of homes.

“The council’s new housing is mostly let by the council at around 60% of the rent that would be charged in the open market. However, the council recognises that there are a range of needs that the housing market does not meet and therefore there is some flexibility.

“The council is considering the needs of its new development programme in relation to the housing market in the city and it is likely that there will be a range of rent levels within the programme, including ‘social rents’, which tend to work out a bit under half of the open market rent or an ‘affordable rent’ which is capped at 80% of the open market rent, alongside the normal council rent (as stated above at 60% of open market level).

“The council’s 500 programme, started in 2017, is set to deliver 542 homes owned by the council and rented for council rent by 2024. These homes are mostly gas free and are delivered to a higher sustainability standard than is set by the Local Plan and in Building Regulations. The council’s new housing programme includes the intention to develop 1000 council homes by 2032. For these homes, standards are being raised further - targeting passivhaus standards initially and net zero carbon levels by 2030, in line with the council’s wider objectives around climate change.”

The executive councillors leading on this matter is Cllr Gerri Bird (Labour), Executive Councillor for Housing and Cllr Katie Thornburrow (Labour), Executive Councillor for Planning and Infrastructure. Spokespersons for the other political groups on this issue are Cllr Katie Porrer (Liberal Democrat), Cllr Tim Bick (Liberal Democrat), Cllr Matthew Howard (Green/Independent Group) and Cllr Sam Davies (Green/Independent Group).