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Developers Misdirected in Bemoaning Onerous Planning Conditions Are Delaying Development, Says POS

Date: 17/10/2013

In response to queries from Building magazine POS disagrees with developers that have been suggesting that whilst the NPPF may have encouraged more planning permissions to be granted, it is the onerous conditions and 'red tape' attached to these permissions that is now proving to be the delaying factor in more housebuidling coming forward.

Mike Kiely, POS President and Director of Planning at Croydon LBC, commented "I think there is a fair charge that some LPAs take too long to clear them, the reason being that they are not measured on them so with limited resources they go to the bottom of the pile. As to imposing them unnecessarily developers should appeal against them and quote the NPPF - if they are unnecessary the PINs Inspector will allow the appeal. They can do this ASAP after receiving permission, and as development commencement always takes a while after that there should be no programming issue."

Kiely added "a possible reason that the industry is moaning now could be that pre-commencement conditions take on an additional meaning in the CIL world. A developer only benefits from statutory relief (ie £0 CIL for affordable housing) if they discharge all pre-commencement conditions before they start work. Hitherto developers were tardy on doing this - now it costs them!"

POS said there are rules around conditions: Para 206 of NPPF - Planning conditions should only be imposed where they are necessary, relevant to planning and to the development to be permitted, enforceable, precise and reasonable in all other respects.

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