Promising new world
April 25 heralded a promising new world for developers with the coming into force of the Growth and Infrastructure Act 2013. Residential Development lawyer, Callum Nuttall calls the measures ‘a significant step forward in recognising that developers have, in the past, been hamstrung by historic laws which are open to abuse, unnecessary red tape and unhelpful planning procedures’. He adds that, ‘this is good news for housebuilders as well as good news for growth and we are delighted to support our clients through the changes’.
One of the most significant and welcome measures which the Act brings with it is reform of the legislation on town and village greens – a concern to developers who are always at risk of an apparently unused piece of land suddenly becoming the subject of a claim. The reforms will remove the conflict between the planning system and the town and village green consent process. Eventually, the reforms will also enable a landowner to deposit information at the commons registration authority to bring to an end any period of ‘as of right’ recreational use. Combined with the reduction (in England), from two years to one year, of the grace period for registration in relation to certain applications, this potentially removes a considerable thorn from the side of developers.
Other positive moves for developers see:
- Economically unviable section 106 agreements being given reconsideration to unblock development on an estimated 75,000 stalled homes;
- A desperately needed kick start for major infrastructure work with fast-track procedures for major projects;
- A simpler planning system designed to promote sustainable growth. Great news if developers want to cut down on the paperwork associated with a planning application; and
- The removal of overlapping development consent regimes which currently require application to different government agencies.
Planning Minister Nick Boles said: “The Growth and Infrastructure Act is a major landmark for the coalition government. These new laws will reform our economy so it can boost investment, growth and jobs by streamlining a lot of confusing and overlapping red tape that all too often gets in the way of people’s everyday lives.
Find out more
For the full statement, go to: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/royal-assent-for-growth-and-infrastructure-act
For our full briefing on the changes relating to town and village greens go to: