Spatial planning and housing policy: On the ties that bind

  • Hugo Priemus
Article

Abstract

Spatial planning and housing policy in the Netherlands have supported each other for many years. In addition, spatial planning has played a stimulating role in carrying out spatial policy. Since the end of the 1980s, however, a new coalition has emerged between spatial planning and environmental policy, especially at the intraregional level. In the same period, housing policy has become strongly market-oriented. Thus, frictions have arisen in the relation between spatial planning and housing policy. This paper deals with a number of contradictions between housing policy and spatial planning:
  • -the artificial shortage of land for housing;

  • -the tension between urban density and consumer preferences;

  • -the rigid housing differentiation, which is at odds with the flexibility of housing markets;

  • -the danger of spatial segregation; and

  • -the tension between residential construction and environmental priorities.

It proves difficult to combine an ambitious central spatial planning policy with a market-oriented housing policy. A more promising solution would be to approach both fields as a combination of market and policy. This would entail more policy in housing and more market in environmental policy. More coordination between spatial planning and housing policy is both possible and desirable.

Keywords

Public Transport Housing Market Spatial Planning Housing Policy Housing Association 

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© Delft University Press 1997

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  • Hugo Priemus

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