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Deadline Extension

Deadline Extension

30.06.20

Following the COVID-19 pandemic, the government has extended planning permission deadlines across the construction industry, which typically expire after three years if work has not started onsite.

This means that planning permission notices with an expiry date between the start of the lockdown and the end of 2020 will qualify for a deadline extension until 1 April 2021.

“An extension to planning permissions is a welcome boost for development sites across the country and something we have been working with government throughout lockdown to progress.” Ian Fletcher, director of Real Estate Policy, British Property Federation, stated.

“It is vital to economic recovery that new investment continues to flow into our towns and cities, homes and high streets, and for those projects on rapidly expiring planning permissions over the coming months, this extension allows them to proceed with a little more leeway.

“Government should also continue to monitor the situation post April 2021 given the tremendous economic and operational challenges developers continue to face.”

In addition to the extension, the government has also encouraged builders to work flexible hours on construction sites on a temporary basis, in a bid to make it easier to follow public health guidelines by staggering builders’ arrival times.

The appeals process has also been amended. Measures will permanently grant the Planning Inspectorate the ability to use more than one procedure – written representations, hearings and inquiries – at the same time when dealing with a planning appeal.

Claire Dutch, partner and co-head of planning and environment at law firm Ashurst, said: “The choice of appeal format (written reps, hearing or inquiry) is an important one but many in the industry have considered the ‘siloed’ appeal system to be too rigid and inflexible.

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