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In part 1 we described the changes to The Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2020 and what that means for the uses of a property.
There are more changes, though, this time to The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (Amendment) (England) (No. 2) Regulations 2020.
The changes, which we will outline below, introduce new permitted development rights allowing certain residential developments without the need for express planning permission. The rights allow buildings and homes to be extended vertically, or for flats or offices to be demolished and replaced with taller residential buildings, both creating more living accommodation which will hopefully help to alleviate the housing shortage in England.
From 1st August 2020 it is possible to add up to two new floors on top of an existing detached block of flats. The idea is that the government is helping developers to build new and additional homes without needing to find new land to build on.
It sounds a little strange, but the principle is that we will be building up rather than building out.
There are, of course, important qualifications which include:
From 31st August 2020 a similar thing can be done with houses and other buildings as well - extending them vertically. There are four instances (new classes) where this can be done:
In all cases, two storeys can be added to a house/building that already has two storeys, or one storey added to a house/building with one existing storey. Note that rooms below ground or in the roof do not count as a storey.
This is not a free-for-all in terms of what can be done when extending. For example:
Of course there are limitations, including things like natural light in all rooms, the impact on the amenity space of other neighbouring buildings, or impact on local air control. These are considered through a prior notification application to your local Council before development can start.
It is hard to imagine many properties, particularly homes, extending upwards. One would imagine that the engineering difficulties and costs would be very high, and presumably you would have to take the roof off your house to do it.
What is likely to be much more attractive to developers is the new Class ZA. This allows a block of flats or a single detached office/light industrial building to be demolished and replaced with a new block of flats or house, which can be up to two storeys higher than the previous structure.
Once again there is the need to apply to the Council for prior approval before development starts which gives it the chance to consider issues such as design, impact on neighbours and highway impacts.
The government has said that the purpose behind these changes is to make redevelopment on brownfield sites easier, which will reduce the pressure on greenfield sites. The more efficient use of previously development land is welcomed provided the detail is right.
Again, there is a lot more detail behind these changes to the regulation, we have elided over some of the deep detail; please do not take legal advice from a blog. If you are interested in a development that is affected or made possible by the new regulations and you need advice or help, please contact us.
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