On 1 August, the housing minister, Robert Jenrick, announced that new homes and hospitals will be granted “automatic” permission to be built as part of sweeping planning reforms in England.
However, press coverage around the announcement implied that automatic planning permission would be granted, which is somewhat misleading.
What the announcement actually means is that “permission in principle” (PIP) will be given to developments on land designated “for renewal” to help speed-up delivery of new builds.
Whilst PIP is a good step in the right direction to encourage regeneration, it is not the same as receiving full planning permission.
The current PIP system still requires an application to be made to fill in the detail before any building works are permitted.
Not only this, development proposals on land with PIP will still need to undergo assessment by the Local Planning Authority, and can still be refused if they do not meet requirements of the Local Plan in question.
The approval process will also require resourcing from the Local Planning Authority along with a statutory determination period.
So, whilst the proposed changes could speed up the process via a slimmed-down scope for determining applications, the details on design and site-specific constraints could still take some time given Local Planning Authority resourcing.
To understand more about what the latest changes mean, don’t hesitate to contact our planning team for more information.