The Government has approved a new measure that will allow developers to create two flats above shops without planning permission.
Under current regulations, only one flat can be created above a shop without planning permission. However, from 1 October 2012, this will be increased to two flats above shops and financial and professional services premises. The change in permitted development rights applies to A1 (retail units) and A2 (financial/professional services units) commercial properties.
The new planning rights are part of the Government’s response to Mary Portas’ review of high streets in the UK. It is hoped that the relaxation of the law will help increase the vitality of town centres by increasing footfall and providing a boost to high street regeneration.