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Developers taking advantage of loosened planning regulations from the introduction of permitted Development rights for the change of use of commercial office space to residential use has been high over the past year. It is no secret that when there is a permitted development right, the full use of it will be taken, and is even being said that they are now being used to set a precedent. Developers are using PD rights as a bargaining tool, for example suggesting two scenario’s to a local authority – one being where they go the PD route, avoiding any S106 obligations or they can push for consent to be granted on a bigger more controversial scheme through the planning application avenue . A supposed ‘win-win’.
We have thus seen more and more office to resi schemes come to light using the PD’s. Recently, in the Docklands this has increased and in fact Criterion Capital a freeholder in the docklands have just submitted London’s biggest office to resi scheme, using only their Permitted Development rights. Their plan being to create 431 homes, 2,300 residential units and 14,000 sq. meters of commercial space by demolishing Anchorage House, Capstan House, Lighterman House and later on, Mulberry Place – where Tower Hamlets council is currently housed, although this is all only at a scoping application stage so far.
Morgan Pryce looks forward to hearing Tower Hamlets response on this scope application.
This news was brought to you by Morgan Pryce, a specialist tenant acquisition agent with offices in Oxford Circus and the City. Morgan Pryce specialises in search, negotiation and project management and works exclusively for tenants. Click here to start your office search.