Condition to restrict office use judged unreasonable

Council efforts to retain a condition restricting the use of premises in Birmingham to a radio station with ancillary offices have been overruled by an inspector.

The council‘s concern was that removal of the condition would pave the way for permitted development rights to change the use to residential within an area recently designated as a core employment area. This would have adverse consequences for the future operation of neighbouring industrial uses, it maintained.

The inspector found that the original reason for imposing the condition was simply to define the scope of the permission. This was neither necessary nor reasonable and did not relate to the council’s current reasons for refusing to allow it to be lifted, he decided.

He saw no substantive evidence that an unrestricted class B1(a) office use or a class C3 residential use if prior approval was granted after due consideration of its impacts would adversely affect nearby uses or detract from the strategic importance of the employment area. He was not satisfied that the condition had a necessary or reasonable purpose and concluded that it could be removed.

Inspector: Andrew Parkin; Written representations

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