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Agenda item

Article 4 Direction for Changes of Use from B8 (Storage and Distribution) to C3 (Dwelling houses

[Report of the Director for Planning, Regeneration and Development. To be introduced by the Cabinet Member for Planning.] Cabinet to consider bringing into effect an Article 4 Direction removing the right to convert B8 (Storage and Distribution) to C3 (Dwelling houses) where required to retain key employment sites in employment use, and ensure the achievement of managed growth delivering of both housing and jobs.


The Cabinet Member for Planning introduced the report which set out the making of a non-immediate Article 4 Direction to withdraw the temporary permitted development right within the designated employment areas of the Borough, as shown on the plan at Appendix A.  The objective in making the Article 4 Direction was to ensure planning applications are considered on their planning merit on a case-by-case basis against the relevant policies of the Local Plan, which seek to retain these key employment sites in employment use, and ensure the achievement of managed growth delivering both new housing and jobs.



Following a vote of Cabinet Members  -




1.    The making of and consultation (for a six-week period in accordance with the Council’s Statement of Community Involvement) on a non-immediate Article 4 Direction under the Town and Country (General Permitted Development Order) 2015, to come into effect 12 months after it comes into operation, withdrawing permitted development rights to convert buildings of less than 500sqm in Use Class B8 (Storage and Distribution) to Use Class C3 (Dwellinghouse) for the areas of the Borough outlined in bold on the plan at Appendix 1.


2.    To delegate authority to the Director for Planning, Regeneration and Development, in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Planning, to formally confirm the non-immediate Article 4 Direction following (1. the expiry of the six week consultation period; 2. the expiry of a minimum statutory 28 day confirmation period), if having fully considered all representations made during the consultation period, they are of the opinion that the Article 4 Direction should be made.


Alternative options considered

The only alternative option is not to introduce an Article 4 Direction and to allow the new permitted development right to be exercised across the Borough (i.e. the ‘do nothing’ option).


While the do nothing option would include a requirement to monitor the up-take and impact of this change on employment locations, this option runs the risk of significantly undermining the strategic objectives of the Local Plan to strike a sustainable balance between the delivery of both housing and employment growth. In the longer-term it may also compromise the ability of the Council to retain its main employment areas in an employment designation, which is considered essential in achieving sustainable development and growth within an urban London borough like Haringey. For these reasons, the do nothing option can be dismissed.


An Article 4 Direction would enable the Council to safeguard the main strategic, homogenous and economically important employment areas within the Borough, ensuring these are not compromised by incremental residential development, the effect of which is likely to undermine business confidence and investment, and result in reverse sensitivities and pressure to respond by the new tenants of these homes to reallocate surrounding employment land and buildings to either residential or more residential compatible mixed uses. 


The Regulation allow the Council discretion as to when the Direction will come into force, which must be at least 28 days, but not longer than 2 years, after the end of the consultation period. In addition, there are compensation provisions that apply in circumstances where an application for planning permission, for an application formally permitted, is made before the end of the period of 12 months beginning with the date on which the Article 4 came into operation. Accordingly, the Council would wish to minimise its exposure to this compensation provision and a 12 month notification period is recommended.


Reasons for decision

The Council considers that this new permitted development right, and the effect of the prior approval process, significantly dilutes its planned and managed approach to meeting local employment needs and demands, and does very little to facilitate proper sustainable place-making, on-going business confidence and the delivery of sustainable development, including jobs growth.  Having regard to local circumstances, it is not considered that the adverse effects likely to arise as a result of this change to permitted development rights would be offset by the positive benefits the new rights would bring in terms of the potential delivering of any new housing.


The making of this Article 4 Direction is therefore seen as crucial to ensuring the proper long-term planning of the area and to protect local wellbeing, in particular the Council’s ability to prevent the loss of uses which contribute to local jobs and the wider strategic aims for the area. The Council considers it appropriate that proponents of schemes to convert warehouses in B8 use to residential use, should submitted a planning application to be considered on its merits on a case-by-case basis in the usual way.

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