New permitted development rights introduced
As part of the wider drive to uplift the housing supply and help drive the economy out of the Coronavirus induced recession, Robert Jenrick has introduced new permitted development rights legislation. The legislation encourages extensions to buildings at rooftop level, provides more flexibility regarding changes of use, and promotes demolition of vacant buildings to be replaced with apartment blocks.
New permitted development rights include:
- Additional Storeys to Dwellings. Existing houses can be extended through adding up to two storeys. The rights apply to houses that are detached, semi-detached or in a terrace. Restrictions will apply. For example, the rights only apply to houses built between 1 July 1948 and 28 October 2018.
- Additional Storeys to Create Dwellings. The construction of up to two additional storeys will be permitted to create additional homes. This applies to free standing blocks, buildings in a terrace that are in certain commercial uses and in mixed uses with an element of housing. Maximum heights will apply for these developments, along with other restrictions.
- Demolition and Rebuild for Residential Use. New rights will allow the demolition of vacant free-standing buildings to be replaced by residential developments. The rights will only apply to certain types of buildings and strict criteria will apply.
- Changes to Use Classes Order. A new, broad, “commercial, business and service” use class has been created. Buildings within this class will be able to change to another use, or mix of uses, within the use class without the need for planning permission.
Needless to say, there are a whole load of ‘strings attached’ for all of these developments, most notably that the rights will not apply to buildings that are in conservation areas or are listed. Furthermore, there will inevitably be an inherent resistance from Local Planning Authorities to applicants looking to bulldoze schemes through that previously would have fallen short of required ‘standards’. Most likely, the process will not be an easy ride but there will certainly be significant interest from developers and freeholders of buildings looking to take advantage of the new opportunities.
For example, one of our clients Echlin, who are developers, currently have a two-storey rooftop extension scheme (comprising of seven apartments) at Appeal with the Planning Inspectorate. Due to lengthy delays (“due to Covid-19”) they will likely be one of the first to experience this new journey as they have submitted the scheme for ‘Prior Approval’ under the new Permitted Development Rights. As the determination period is given as eight weeks the new legislation should deliver a much quicker outcome.
For further information, please contact your relationship partner. Alternatively, Chris Bailey at Echlin is happy to talk with freeholders of buildings and other developers who might like to explore the opportunities presented.
For further details on the changes view the Government Planning Portal via the links below: