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Goverment calls for reduction in planning consents

A number of consents that developers must obtain before building works can begin should be removed according to a government review.

The review, carried out by British Land head of planning and environment at Adrian Penfold, recommends simplifying non-planning consents by removing some and merging groups of related consents.

It also calls for improved coordination around decisions involving multiple decision makers and greater certainty for developers by improving the way planning and non-planning consents work together.

Mr Penfold said: “My review presents a package of measures that would deliver real benefits to developers by removing unnecessary burdens and speeding up processes.

“The proposed changes should also give people more influence over what happens in their local communities, thanks to more efficient, transparent and accountable processes.”

Other recommendations include strengthening the service culture of decision making bodies by setting timetables for the determination of non-planning consents.

The British Property Federation and the Home Builders Federation welcomed the review.

Minister for Business Mark Prisk said: “Businesses involved in construction and development should not have to deal with a regime made more complicated through needless red tape and procedure.

“We need innovative solutions that simplify how government can deliver real benefits for business, saving time and money and encouraging growth.”