A YORKSHIRE residential property expert has urged the next government to put city living at the heart of its housing policy.
Julian D'Arcy, head of property agency Knight Frank, urged whichever party wins the General Election to overhaul the planning system to encourage more apartment developments in towns and cities.
He said partnerships between local councils and private developers had proved to be the key for an "economic renaissance" in places like Huddersfield, Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle.
Developments in and around Huddersfield town centre include 1535 The Melting Point at Firth Street and John William Court at John William Street.
Knight Frank is also involved in plans for flats at the former Yorkshire Building Society offices at Britannia Buildings, St George's Square.
Mr D'Arcy said the city living revolution had also revitalised Brighouse, Dewsbury and Batley - with schemes to convert disused mills into apartments now under way.
But he said the lack of a clear policy meant some local authorities across the country were less likely than others to pursue city living schemes.
He said: "The current system simply isn't working. It's creating a lottery for many developers which is holding back development and economic regeneration running into tens of millions of pounds."
Mr D'Arcy also urged a future government to raise the level of stamp duty - the tax paid on property transactions - to £150,000 from the current £120,000.
He said: "The residential housing market is both a gauge and a generator of economic prosperity - nowhere more than Yorkshire's towns and cities, where urban regeneration projects have reshaped and reinvigorated many communities."