Reforms designed to speed up regeneration of our high streets risk depriving councillors of a vital role in the local planning process, says Sachin Shah
As a YIMBY, it pains me to be against permitted development. This is because all too often, I see good developments being turned down by planning committees due to the weight of public concern. Permitted developments allow new residential buildings to be developed without having to worry about public opinion or campaigning, and indeed allow councils to meet housing targets, while deflecting any local criticism onto the government. However, these latest sets of permitted developments, which would allow retail and other use class E properties to be converted into residential without planning permission, is something I cannot support in its current form.
Councillors become councillors to serve the community and improve the area they live in. Town planning is one of the most powerful ways to do this, but these permitted developments changes do not do this. They lead to lack of proper planning, poor quality living accommodation for people and no provision for affordable housing.
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