Article 4 Direction - converting offices to residential use

Removing permitted development rights

Make a change

We have made a local change to the Planning Regulations, so that when someone wants to convert office space into housing, in certain parts of the borough, they need planning permission from us.

Background

In 2013 the Government changed the law controlling the development of office buildings. The change means that offices can be converted into houses or flats without planning permission.

In Kingston the change in law means that much of our office space has been converted into housing and this causes us concern. We want to do what we can to ensure that enough office space is available for local businesses to flourish. We want to protect office space by recovering planning control over employment space in the most important parts of the borough. 

How can we protect office space?

At the moment you do not need planning permission to convert office space into housing as you can do this under 'permitted development'. But we have made a local change to the Planning Regulations, so that when someone wants to convert office space into housing, in certain parts of the borough, they need planning permission from us.

We have done this through an 'Article 4 Direction'. You can read more about the Article 4 Direction and which areas it affects within this section.

How we consulted

We wanted to know what you thought about the Direction. From 26 September 2014 until 7 November 2014, we asked you for your say on the changes through our online consultation. 

The responses to this consultation were considered at the Infrastructure, Projects and Contracts committee meeting on 5 February 2015, where it was decided to approve the Direction without making any changes.

The Direction came into force on 1 October 2015.