Changes to plans do not trigger affordable housing contribution

An inspector was unwilling to agree to amend the plans submitted in connection with an approved mixed use scheme in central London and defined by a condition imposed on the consent, but not because it would increase the number of residential units from nine to 10 and thereby trigger a need for affordable housing.

The Court of Appeal ruling in May 2016 gave legal effect to the written ministerial statement (WMS) of November 2014 which did not seek contributions from housing developments of 10 units or less. Therefore, although a local plan policy sought to secure a reasonable amount of affordable housing on schemes of 10 units or more the inspector decided that the WMS should be given more weight. Nonetheless, the scale and layout of the proposal would be materially different from the description of development which had been permitted. On this basis changes to the submitted plans which involved increasing the units to 10 would not fall within the scope of the consent and the appeal was dismissed.

Inspector: Gareth Thomas; Written representations

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