Telford and Wrekin residents wanting to extend their homes and make other minor alterations may not have to apply for planning consent if a proposed Local Development Order gets the go ahead.
They would still have to apply for a Certificate of Compliance but the new order will make the process more straightforward and much swifter.
Subject to cabinet approval, Telford & Wrekin Council plans to consult residents on the introduction of a Local Development Order, which would approve a number of general types of applications for two storey and single storey extensions as well as other alterations that are non-controversial.
Telford & Wrekin Council receives more than 300 householder applications per year and each application currently takes about eight weeks to determine and follows the statutory planning process.
In some cases, these applications involve negotiation over design and may be debated by the council’s Planning Committee, which lengthens the process and adds uincertainty to the outcome of low impact applications.
This is a costly process for the council that the planning application fee does not cover and so a radical review of the process is required.
The proposed Local Development Order would convert a number of these household planning applications to a simplified process, taking no more than two weeks to process, provided the application meets the set criteria. Some exclusions would apply, including houses in multiple occupancy and properties within the Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site.
Councillor Richard Overton, Telford & Wrekin Council’s cabinet member for Housing, said: “The Local Development Order would reduce the number of household applications received, significantly reducing the operating costs of processing such applications.”
“But more importantly, it would simplify and speed up the process for our residents. We estimate that about half the applications we receive each year could be converted into Local Development Order compliant developments.”
The consultation will take place during the autumn with a further report requiring adoption of the Local Development Order going to cabinet in January.