Planning rules are relaxed

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HOMEOWNERS across the borough may soon be able to build extensions up to eight metres long under new planning regulations being introduced by the government.

In a bid to boost the economy the government have proposed plans to allow home and business owners to have greater freedom in relation to planning regulations which could see.

The government will consult on allowing people, for a three-year period, to build larger extensions on houses - up to eight metre long for detached homes.

Rules on shops and offices expanding and on developments having to include affordable housing will be relaxed as ministers seek to boost the economy.

Just a few months ago the government rewrote the entire planning framework for England, after fierce initial resistance from countryside campaigners. Now ministers want further changes to planning in England in an attempt to boost house-building and revive the economy.

Under the government’s plans, if developers can prove these requirements make a site commercially unviable, the conditions will be removed.

There will be a consultation on allowing homeowners and businesses, for a three-year period, to be able to build much bigger extensions without planning permission than they can at present.

The new Permitted Development Rights would make it easier to install conservatories and loft extensions without going through weeks of planning bureaucracy.

If the plans go ahead, full planning permission - required for extensions of more than three or four metres from the rear wall of any home - would only be needed for those reaching beyond eight metre for detached homes and six metre for others.

Rules that restrict an extension to no more than 50 per cent of a property’s garden will remain.

Businesses would be able to expand shops by 100 square metres and industrial units by 200 square metres.

There will also be £300m of additional funding to provide up to 15,000 affordable homes and bring 5,000 empty homes back into use.

The announcements come as the economy continues to languish, with the recession now having lasted more than nine months. The construction sector has performed particularly badly.