There is often a tendency to believe that change or improvements can only ever be achieved though the medium of large scale project. Typical of this thinking are projects like HS2, for example. Big, however, is not always beautiful and there are lots of good examples of smaller scale initiatives that are easy to adopt and bring relatively speedy results. For example, Winchester City Council have two interesting housing initiatives. The first called their Partnered Home Purchase Scheme (a sort of rent to buy arrangement) which helps first time buyers onto the property ladder whilst at the same time offers a reasonable financial return for the Council. The second, a scheme that involves the redevelopment of a car park for housing with extra-care facility. Faced with the option of selling the car park and receiving a one off capital receipt they instead decided to create a facility that benefits the community as a whole.
The challenge, especially with no revenue support grant, is to keep coming up with and supporting new proposals to help meet the financial challenge, whilst focussing on changing levels of demand and the many other pressures we face.