Sadiq Khan will make his first major speech of the election campaign, when he sets out four priority areas to deal with as London Mayor in Isleworth this morning. The Labour candidate will attack the rising cost of living in the capital – particularly soaring prices of housing and transport fares.
“London is the greatest city in the world, but we’re at a crossroads,” he will say. “Londoners are being priced out of our city by the Tory housing crisis and the cost of commuting – missing out on the opportunities that London gave me. If we don’t act now, it could be too late.”
He is pledging to bring in a 50% affordable housing target with firm rules for developers to ensure that new homes built are “genuinely affordable”. He has also said that new homes will be built on the city’s many brownfield sites, protecting the Green Belt; ensure that Londoners are given priority for new homes rather than overseas investors; and introduce London Living Rent homes, pegging rents to a third of the local average wage.
On transport, Khan has reiterated his promise to freeze all TfL fares until 2020 and introduce a new ‘Hopper’ bus ticket, so people can use more than one bus on a single fare. The speech today also touches on getting work on Crossrail 2 started, as well planning ahead for future infrastructure projects such as Crossrail 3 and extending the outer London orbital routes.
He plans to say:
“I want to build a London in which all Londoners can afford a roof over their head and to get to work, and in which housing and transport are no longer the sources of stress and worry they are today.
“A city in which every single Londoner has the opportunities to fulfil their potential – where a kid growing up on a council estate can go on to become a lawyer, an entrepreneur, a head teacher or a doctor – providing they put in the work.”
Khan is spelling out his own individuality, too, and says he won’t be pushed around by anyone:
“I won’t be anyone’s patsy – I’ll stand up for Londoners against anyone who threatens their interests. Whether it’s David Cameron or Jeremy Corbyn – if they get it wrong I’ll say so. I’ll always work to get the best possible deal for Londoners.”