Review: Permitted Development – 8 February 2017

Permitted development: Latest changes and impacts on London


On Wednesday 8th February Mike Derbyshire. Head of Planning at Bidwells, and John East, Strategic Director for Growth and New Homes at London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, spoke at RTPI London’s CPD and networking event “Permitted Development: Latest changes and impacts on London”. The event was sponsored by Bidwells and focused on office to residential permitted development rights.

Mike explained how office to residential PD rights work, key appeal decisions and take up across London. Mike highlighted that circa 13,000 new homes were provided from the change of use of offices nationally in 2015/16, a significant proportion of the 190,000 dwellings added to stock in total during the same period.

John East provided a focused insight on the impacts – positive and negative – in Barking and Dagenham. Using a number of case studies, he explained the benefits of regenerating low grade office space in sustainable locations, experience that showed many of the schemes completed under PD had not led to dwellings falling below acceptable space standards, despite a lack of policy control, but also concern about the absence of affordable housing.

A straw poll taken at the end of the event suggested a narrow majority of those attending considered office to residential permitted development rights to be positive attribute of the planning system. A follow up poll is being conducted on twitter to corroborate this result. Check it out, along with the discussion surrounding the event, by searching #PD2017.

Presentations are available on request.


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