Ashton under Lyne and Stockport Permitted Development Rights

Ashton under Lyne and Stockport are typical of post-recession Greater Manchester towns. With a significant retail portfolio but suffering from low occupancy rates, a local investor/developer was in need of a more efficient route to increased income generation from his existing portfolio across Greater Manchester.

One of the more significant issues with the client’s plans to improve the existing stock was the planning costs of developing retail sites to higher value, albeit affordable tenure, residential use.

In one particular local planning authority,  both residential and retail values were significantly depressed, developer contributions were being levied at such a rate that viability was a major barrier to redevelopment.

Between 2011 and 2013 Millson assisted the client in applying parts F and J of the general permitted development order.

The general permitted development order (GPDO) grants planning approval at a statutory level for specific types of development. In recent years, there have been a large number of changes to the GPDO that have been aimed at stimulating the development of underutilised space. Part of the changes have seen permitted development rights granted for the space above retail, and certain other high Street uses, to be converted into dwellings.

For our client, the use of such permitted development rights allowed him to concentrate on quickly turning around space above his existing shops and professional offices, into income generating flats.

However, there was another significant benefit. Because the GPDO is granted at a national level in statute, the local level requirements that would be normally considered through a planning application were not relevant.

This saved the client significant sums in developer contributions.