News, Reviews and headlines

September 2013 New national online guidance

The government has now launched its new online national planning guidance which it hopes will give greater simplicity and clarity to the planning system and bring about better community involvement.

The guidance includes a new affordability test for determining how many homes should be built; advises that councils should build more bungalows and plan positively for an ageing population; and new local green space guidance to help councils and local communities to plan for open space and protect local green spaces which are special to them.

June 2013 Permitted Development rights now in force

We reported previously the likelyhood of new permitted development rights to be introduced and many of these changes are now (as of 30 May 2013) in force. See our briefing note for a short summary of the new regulations here

February 2013 Government announces permitted development for office to residential

Details of the coalition’s policy to allow offices to be converted into homes without planning permission, were announced last week. The new permitted development rights would allow change of use from B1(a) offices to C3 residential. For more details see arc planning briefing note here

October 2012 More Planning Reforms Announced by CLG…

Following on from the publication of the NPPF and other consultations, on 6th September 2012 the Communities Secretary Eric Pickles set out additional measures that it claims will drive the implementation of reforms to the planning system and remove bureaucracy that it considers hinder sustainable growth.  For more details See arc planning briefing note below.

April 2012 National Planning Policy Framework published

The Government has now published the new National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) (27 March 2012) and the policies contained within this apply from the day of publication. The implications of the NPPF will really only be known over the next few months as it is tested, but it does sweep away the majority of other Planning Policy Statements and certain Circulars. See our briefing note to find out what it means for you at the following link

December 2011

George Osborne’s Autumn Statement, the Plan for Growth Implementation Update and the new National Infrastructure Plan 2011 confirm further planning reform to help deliver the Government hopes to build a stronger economy.

They announce consultations to look out for in 2012, covering the streamlining of non-planning consents, appeals and changes of use, as well as the proposed 12 month ‘planning guarantee’.


November 2011

The Localism Bill was introduced to Parliament on 13 December 2010, and was given Royal Assent on 15 November 2011.

Although the majority of the Act comes into force on a day of the government’s choosing (expected to be 6 April 2012), some sections have now come into force.

Another tranche comes into force on 15 January 2012. The most important section that came fully into force recently is the duty on local authorities to co-operate on the planning of sustainable development (s.110).  Those in the middle of preparing their development plans will now have to consider whether they should enter discussions with neighbouring authorities.

Eric Pickles is also now entitled to lay an order revoking one or more regional strategies, although because he is consulting on the environmental effects of doing so until 20 January 2012 this is not likely to take place.  Meanwhile, CALA Homes is launching yet another legal challenge to Pickles’ decision to refuse permission for its housing scheme in Winchester.

arc news…

arc planning HOUSING & REGENERATION Copley Close Shortlisted for London Award

The Copley Close project (see below) has been shortlisted for the prestigious annual London Planning Awards as Best Conceptual Project. arc planning were a key part of the team involved in the success of the project to date and this is great news and fair recognition for what promises to be a truly innovative and transformational project.

More details of the list of shortlisted candidates can be found at the RTPI web site here.,1XC6D,A2LRNY,6WX7E,1

arc planning HOUSING & REGENERATION application success

Last night, London Borough of Ealing approved the full planning application for the Copley Close regeneration. arc planning were appointed to assist in providing advice and support in the finalisation of a site wide masterplan and prepare and submit the final planning application for the development. We prepared supporting statements and submitted the application and helped guide the application proposals through the planning process.

Copley Close is the first regeneration project that is led and funded directly by the council. The scheme is a national example of urban transformation; a genuine mix of refurbishment and new build, mixed tenure homes designed  on a tenure blind/pepper potted basis.

This is a great achievement for the Council’s project team and members of the design team (Hunters, HTA and Peter Brett Associates) who have worked tirelessly to produce design solutions to very complex issues.

arc planning EDUCATION success

arc planning were appointed by the Education Funding Agency to provide planning support to MACE Project Management for proposals for two new free schools.  We have recently secured permission for the reuse of existing office buildings for St Andrew the Apostle school (Barnet) and the Nishkam School (Isleworth) enabling the schools to open in time for September.

arc planning new LONDON office to open

We are pleased to announce that from 4th March 2013 arc planning will also be located at 34b York Way, London, N19AB, handily placed right next to Kings Cross St Pancras Station.

Feel free to call Chris Bean on 07534 138851 if you are passing through, in the area and would like to come in and have a chat about any of your project needs

arc planning INFRASTRUCTURE success

Following our appointment to provide planning consultancy support to Murphys / Hochtief JV in relation to the North Woolwich Portal and worksite in LB Newham, arc planning have sucessfully obtained a certificate of lawfulness for the new work site.  The commission involved preparing planning justification, liaison and presentation to LB Newham officers and preparation of supporting environnmental report demonstrating that the works were not EIA development.

arc planning HOUSING & REGENERATION success

arc planning were appointed to support Levitt Bernstein Architects in the preparation of the full planning application submitted on behalf of Ealing Council to promote the regeneration of the neighbourhood known as the Golf Links Estate, Southall. The Council’s 2008 estates review highlighted the extent of work needed at the Golf Links Estate to address the improvements needed to bring it up to the government’s Decent Homes standard. The proposals have now been approved by the Council and involve the development of 60 dwellings in a group buildings comprising of terrace housing and a separate block of flats. The dwelling mix includes one, two, three and four bed family units with private gardens and 10% fully wheelchair accessible units.
Information on the planning application here… 


Useful contacts and information sources;

Urban Design Group


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If you would like to discuss our services and how we might help you, please contact

Christopher Bean BA (Hons) MRTPI MAUD,
arc planning
34b York Way,

 07534 138851