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Permitted Development Rights – Planning

2 Comments 2nd July 2010

Town planners often remove permitted development rights when approving planning permission for certain developments.  This is often heavy handed and restricts the developer and future owners to making improvements including to improve the environmental performance of a property.  It restricts addition of renewable energy generation schemes including solar panels, wind turbines and solid fuel burners (where additional flues/chimneys are required).

My suggestion is to ensure that planning officers, committees and authorities cannot remove all permitted development rights from property developments out of a matter of course and have to follow strict guidance when applying any restrictions, and that restrictions can only be applied after approval by the Planning Inspectorate

Furthermore, limited permitted development rights should be granted to listed buildings, following strict guidance.

Planningguidanceshould come from central government and local interpretation should be reduced.  More powershouldbe given to parish councils to have their say in planning approvals.

Why does this matter?

The planning process is bureaucratic and longwinded.  Often different planning authorities interpret planning guidance differently toneighbouringauthorities and those in different parts of the country.  Local planning authorities can even treat planning applications in a manner that do not follow county council planning guidelines and published design guidance documents.  Treatment of planning applications can vary considerably for different types of projects such that developers have limited assurance and guidance as to what development schemes would be deemed acceptable.  An unlimited removal of permitted development rights following planning permission is a restriction of civil liberties.  It prevents a property owner from further developments to a property without following a route of submitting further planning applications with noassurancethat these would be granted.  The restrictions can often be more severe than those imposed on listed buildings and preventsdevelopmentof renewable energy generation and minor extensions and modifications e.g. toimproveaccess fordisabled persons, to provide room for equipment/machinery required for renewable energy (such as ground source heat pumps, thermal stores, mechanically ventilated heat recovery exchangers etc), to providefacilitiesto allow for lifetime adaptation of properties (e.g. provision of ground floor bedrooms and bathrooms) and lifestyle adaptation to include home working offices etc.

Developers often submit reduced scope planning applications due to uncertainty that the planning process introduces and removal of permitted developments increase the uncertainty of whether future developments would be approved.  The result is that properties are not developed to their full potential especially when considering their environmental performance.  Reducing the constraints that a planning authority can impose would encourage environmental improvements to properties to meet government targets in reducing carbon dioxide emissions and development of properties to help stimulate local economies.  By increasing powers of Parish Councils in the planning process, local considerations are upheld and developments are only made if in keeping with the surrounding area.

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2 Responses to Permitted Development Rights – Planning

  1. Rick Seymour says:

    So are you prepared to pay for parish councillors to be trained in planning law by an increase in precept council tax?
    There are already 3 layers of planning regulation
    Secretary of State
    County Council
    District Council

    Do we want to add another tier?

    We must stop people saying “Not-In-My-BackYard”, to prevent any building.

    How about District Councils identify areas that are ripe for development and then local communities decide what they want in that area?

    However in your idea.. one must ask the question.. why weren’t renewable provision not included in the original planning application for the new build?

    Central government could reduce the consideration for visual amenity with regards to planning applications.

  2. Michael Dickinson says:

    This has nothing to do with listed buidlings as such

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