A proposed change to planning policy could radically boost regeneration in Cornwall, according to Alder King Property Consultants.
The Government is currently consulting on a proposed amendment to the General Permitted Development Order in England that, if implemented, would allow the change of use of buildings in B Class uses (business) into C3 Residential use without the need for a planning application, in certain circumstances. Consultation will close at the end of June and a decision made by the Secretary of State will follow.
Alder King says that the proposals will promote the regeneration of commercial land and help bring empty commercial buildings back into use.
Howard Williamson, surveyor at Alder King, said: “This change in policy could encourage economic growth by encouraging developers to bring redundant commercial buildings back into use, whilst tackling the requirement for more housing.
“The proposals look to introduce permitted development rights to allow a change of use from B1 (business) to C3 (dwelling house) to happen freely without the need for planning applications. Where a site requires any additional work to the exterior of an existing building, a planning application will be required in the normal way, but the principle would be established.
“Increased housing development will lead to an improvement in economic efficiency and overall welfare reflecting the more efficient use of scarce land as housing, of which there is relatively strong demand compared to other uses.”