The co-ordinating body behind the 1100 ha Thames Gateway regeneration project is looking for up to three urban regeneration companies to be set up.
The Thames Gateway London Partnership has decided that the creation of URCs, one of which could be dedicated to housing development, is the way to kickstart regeneration.

The TGLP set out its argument in response to the draft of London mayor Ken Livingstone’s London plan, the strategic framework for the capital for the next 20 years.

A TGLP source said: “The advice is that there should be a two-pronged approach – the development of an outline masterplan, within which two or three special purpose vehicles could fit. There could also be a sectoral URC, such as for housing.”

Deputy prime minister John Prescott believes that up to 200,000 homes could be built in the Thames Gateway, east of London, but this has been frustrated by the lack of development.

Prescott ordered regeneration quango English Partnerships to select key sites, from 212 available in the area, to unlock the gateway.