Planning News - Nathaniel Lichfield & Partners

Planning News
Commercial
April 2015
CLG Secretary of State (SoS) Eric Pickles
has given his last ‘Planning Update’ in the
form of a Ministerial Statement that provides
details of the most recent steps taken by
the Coalition Government to, ‘streamline the
planning system, protect the environment,
support economic growth and assist locally-led
decision-making’.
Much of the Statement covers the recent flurry
of legislative changes, including the Town
and Country Planning (General Permitted
Development) (England) Order 2015
(GPDO) and the Town and Country Planning
(Development Management Procedure)
(England) Order 2015 that will come into
force on 15 April, 2015. Of particular interest
with the new GPDO is the fact that - despite
DCLG consulting on two options for their
continuation beyond 30 May, 2016 - the office
to residential change of use PDR will ‘expire’
next year after all. It would appear that the
Government has taken into account in the
new Order the unintended consequences of
this current right that have been highlighted by
London councils in particular.
Mention is made in the Statement too of
changes to environmental impact assessment
(EIA) screening thresholds.
A new national planning policy on parking
provision is introduced - the following text from
the Statement now has to be read alongside
paragraph 39 of the National Planning Policy
Framework (NPPF):
‘Local Planning authorities should only impose
local parking standards for residential and
non-residential development where there is
clear and compelling justification that it is
necessary to manage their local road network.’
The Ministerial Statement otherwise refers to
a significant number of important revisions
that are in the process of being made to the
national Planning Practice Guidance (PPG);
the very many revisions include changes to
guidance on: EIA screening threshold changes;
planning performance agreements; charging
for pre-application services; sustainable
drainage systems (SuDS); and renewable and
low carbon energy.
Government consultation on BIDS
DCLG has published a consultation document
on strengthening the role of business
improvement districts (BIDs), following a
review in 2014. The consultation seeks views
on:
• increasing transparency to strengthen
accountability and quality;
• a streamlined approach for BIDs to
bring forward neighbourhood plans and
neighbourhood development orders in
non-parished areas. The proposals would
mean that BID bodies would be eligible
to apply to an LPA to be designated as a
neighbourhood forum, without meeting
the current membership requirements
but with certain conditions being met.
The BID body would also automatically
be a qualifying body for the purposes of
neighbourhood planning, with the body
being able to take forward neighbourhood
planning in designated business
neighbourhood planning areas;
• proposals to give BIDs the choice of who
collects the levy on their behalf; and
• mandating certain information to be
included in Service Level Agreements
between BIDs and local authorities (LAs)
in order to encourage closer working.
The consultation closes on 19 June.
Consultation on changes to
compulsory purchase regime
As part of Budget 2015, and as previously
announced in the 2014 Autumn Statement,
DCLG has launched a new consultation on
changing the compulsory purchase regime.
As well as putting forward a ‘package of
proposals’, the Government is consulting
on 127 pages of draft, updated guidance
on every aspect of compulsory purchase
- from acquiring authorities choosing
the right compulsory purchase power, to
compensation.
The consultation ends on 9 June.
Quote of the month:
“
“
Pickles ties up all the planning
loose ends: out with a bang not a
whimper
“This package of measures will help
deliver more homes in a locally-led
planning system, protect the
environment, provide certainty for local
residents and business, and contribute
to the government’s long-term
economic plan and economic growth.”
SoS Eric Pickles, in his last
announcement on further steps to
streamline the planning system and
more
Historic England consultation on
enhanced services
On 27 March and just prior to its official
launch on 1 April, Historic England (HE)
launched a consultation on providing
‘enhanced advisory services’. The four new
services proposed are:
• fast-track listing;
• listing enhancement;
• extended pre-application advice; and
• screening services
HE’s recently published Corporate Plan
explains an ambition to find new ways to
support developers and others who are
engaged on complex or time sensitive
development proposals. The proposed
service would exist alongside the existing
free planning and designation service which
would be maintained and improved. The
consultation ends on 8 May, 2015.
Contact Us
Margaret Baddeley
Alison Bembenek
[email protected]
T: 020 7837 4477
[email protected]
T: 020 7837 4477
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