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Osborne to shake up housebuilding with planning reforms


Chancellor George Osborne will today unveil a raft of new measures designed to boost housebuilding by reforming the planning system.

Under the new proposals, automatic planning permission would be granted on many brownfield sites in England, while major housing projects could be fast-tracked, and rules on extensions in London relaxed.

The reforms would also see planning powers devolved to mayors in London and Manchester, while enhanced compulsory purchase powers will allow more brownfield land to be made available for development.

There would also be new sanctions for councils that do not deal with planning applications quickly enough, and the Government would be able to intervene in councils’ local development plans.

The plans, which will need approval from parliament, build on promises in the Conservative manifesto to better utilise brownfield sites, which have previously been developed, but are now vacant or derelict.

During the election campaign the Tories promised to build 275,000 affordable homes during this parliament, while also creating a brownfield fund to unlock homes on brownfield land for additional housing.

They also want to ensure that 90 per cent of suitable brownfield sites have planning permission for housing by 2020.

The British Property Federation has hailed the reforms as “game-changing”, but says the plans will need better funding for local authority planning departments to be effective.

The BPF also says the Government is too focused on owner-occupied housing, and should provide more purpose-built rental accommodation.

Chief executive Melanie Leech says: “We warmly welcome the Government’s recognition of how a functioning and efficient planning system can contribute to the UK’s growth by creating not just new homes, but also the infrastructure that supports great places.”



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There are 4 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Funny innit. Cars get bigger. The current Polo is bigger than the original Golf. But houses get smaller. The rooms are now bug hutches. All very well building – but what are you building – rubbish in the main. Anyone who now buys a house built after 1965 had better go on a diet.

  2. Still doesn’t solve the conundrum of our generation affording them! One can dream of the bug hutch you mention!

  3. Does George Osborne consider that a brown field site 1. includes the land official designated curtilage belonging to a house in general….. Also similarly 2. where a previous bungalow was built with an extension foundations bottomed out and inspected plus agreed by Council, but pulled down with an agreed replacement house built further along, away from the road, but within the large curtilage? Ie can a new abode be easily granted planning permission in either or both regard?

  4. How does George Osborne view the possible granting of planning permission in respect of green belt land,where it has been USED by one owner for over thirty years for horsing and sheep. NB with existing buildings of 10 stables, plus horse walker, as well as over a mile of road and tracks with fenced off paddocks / fields. Also 5 barns within the grounds.? 1. Would planning permission be granted for one house?. 2. Also for more houses, if some were built with low cost affordable housing in mind. 3. Or would envious local planners embued with their own jealousies stop it dead.? Does anyone have a private line through to Mr Osborne for these enquiring thoughts, to help progress this county’s housing needs ?…

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