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TCPA Express Concern over Brownfield Development Rights

October 15, 2015

urban-planningThe Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA) have expressed concerns over the government’s intention to introduce US-style planning zones for brownfield sites. The proposals contained in the new Housing and Planning Bill 2016, which received its first reading in the House of Commons this week, will automatically grant outline planning permission for any housing development proposed on brownfield land. Local authorities will be required to keep a register of brownfield sites in order to assist the process.

Commenting on the proposed changes, TCPA chief executive Kate Henderson said, “Planning has the power to create wonderful places and multiple benefits for our society. However, the persistent deregulation of planning is removing this power and is damaging our ability to deliver the high quality places that the nation needs. As we strive to address the housing crisis and build the homes that the nation desperately needs, it is vital that we have a strong focus on quality as well as quantity, and ensure that the needs of ordinary people remain at the heart of planning.”

Other proposals in the bill include new powers to tackle rogue landlords by placing them on a blacklist which will ban them from renting properties, making the temporary permitted development right which allows offices to be converted into homes permanent, and forcing local authorities to sell any high value vacant properties which become available. A date is yet to be set for the second reading of the bill in parliament.