Published: 12:01, 06 July 2014
A change in Gravesham’s ethnic profile could alter the number of houses that need to be built in the borough.
A report looking at how Gravesham’s population will change reveals an expected increase of nearly 20% in the next 23 years.
By 2037, Gravesham’s population is projected to have increased by 19.6% from its total in 2012 to 122,900 people.
But details from the 2011 census show the UK-born population at just under 80,000, with figures projecting that will drop to just over 60,000 in 2028.
The biggest population increase is expected to be “other white” (not British or Irish) while African, Asian and Indian populations will see a sizeable growth.
The number of households in the borough will also increase by more than 8,500.
With these projections in mind, Gravesham council is looking to work with its neighbouring authorities and planners for Paramount Park and Ebbsfleet Garden City to produce a report on housing need.
Gravesham council says the ethnic population change needs to be seriously considered when the authority is being told how many houses it needs to build.
A report before councillors says: “Projecting household data by ethnic groups results in an indicative need of 4,000 dwellings.
“In comparison, projecting forward household data for the borough as a whole results in an indicative need of 7,400 dwellings.
“If specific groups such as Indians, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis reside in larger households this is taken on board, giving a smaller indicative household need.” The report adds that correlating changes in Gravesham’s population to the number of households by ethnic group illustrates the need to consider housing need by similar criteria, too.
It says: “The differing lifestyle choices among ethnic groups mean that the average household size amongst these groups varies.
“Applying the average household size for a specific ethnic group to the estimated population in 2028 provides an indicative housing need of 4,000 dwellings.”
The number of over-64s is projected to have increased by 60% from 17,200 to 27,500, with those over the age of 64 overtaking the total number of under-16s in 2029.
The UK population is projected to increase by 4.3 million from an estimated 63.7 million in mid-2012 to 68 million by mid-2022 and to 73.3 million to mid-2037.
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