Councils could oppose relax in extension regulations.

Posted: 01/10/2012

The Government have plans to relax planning regulations for extensions on homes and businesses however, the planning minister admitted they can not force councils to adopt the new policy. A poll by the Royal Institute of British Architects revealed that most people are worried that the policy will cause a rise of unregulated building work that may blight communities. The poll consisted of 2,013 adults and found 52% of them believed the new policy would lead to the design of their neighbourhood getting worse and only 7% thought it would make it better.

Dave Cameron announced the relaxed building regulations will last a year and would enable home owners and businesses to extend their buildings by up to 8 metres which he believes would boost local economics. However a council in South West London became the first local authority to publicly oppose the new policy and challenged how the Government will respond. Although the Government have the ultimate power to overrule councils, an existing rule called ‘Article 4’ means that councils can opt out of similar planning regulations.

A new study by SmartNewHomes shows that 53% of the 1,534 people they interviewed believe the UK is being concreted over and the Government need to find a balance between housing needs and countryside protection.

Only 80% of those surveyed disagreed that the Government is striking a sensible balance between housing requirements and protecting the countryside. The study shows that three out of four people overestimated the amount of land developed in England which actually stands at 11%. Almost half of the people believed it to be three times more at 30% and a quarter thought it was six times more at 70%.

What are your thoughts on the relaxation of building regulations for extensions and do you believe the UK’s countryside is being concreted over?

Amanda McGovern, Pali Ltd
www.paliltd.com

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(0) Comments Government, extensions, planning, policy, council, development
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