Raising the roof – new permitted development right allows upwards extensions

The idea of introducing a new permitted development (PD) right to allow certain buildings to be extended upwards has been considered for some time. The Autumn 2018 Budget announced a consultation which included proposals to allow certain buildings to be extended upwards to provide new housing. Since then, upwards extensions have been mentioned on numerous … Read more

Planning reform – more holes in bigger cheese?

I read an article recently which told the story of an Oxford philosopher who spent a long evening with colleagues furiously debating the meaning of life. After eventually collapsing into bed, he awoke in the middle of the night with a brilliant thought. He scribbled it down on a pad beside the bed and went … Read more

Business and Planning Bill – to support Covid-19 recovery

Yesterday, the Department for Business, Enterprise and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) published the Business and Planning Bill 2019-2020 and supporting guidance. This is not the fundamental reform to the planning system that we have been told to expect; rather the Bill contains largely temporary measures to “support the transition from immediate [Covid-19] crisis response and lockdown … Read more

Corporate real estate M&A: a post-Covid-19 perspective

The landscape for real estate M&A has changed considerably over the past few months. For those more familiar with real estate M&A, there will be a perceptible shift in the way deals are managed and negotiated going forward. We have prepared a briefing exploring how future real estate M&A is likely to differ and what … Read more

Beauty and the beast? – design codes and democracy

In his introduction to the recent Policy Exchange publication “Planning Anew“, the Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP has stated that the government will “focus on creating beautiful, environmentally friendly places”. This reference to beauty appears to be another indication that at least some of the recommendations set out in the Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission’s … Read more

Sale and Leasebacks – Why So Popular?

As businesses start to work out how to repair the economic damage caused by lockdown many are looking at ways to release capital from their balance sheets as an alternative to traditional financing routes. One option open to owner occupiers of real estate assets is a sale and leaseback, where an asset is sold (for … Read more

Adapting Urban Centres for the “new normal”

In light of the restrictions on movement imposed by the Public Health (Coronavirus) (England) Regulations 2020, last week the government issued some guidance aimed primarily at owners and operators of public places in England (Coronavirus (COVID-19): Safer Public Places – Urban Centres and Green Spaces (13 May 2020)). The guidance has no legal impact and … Read more