End of mega-basements in Kensington and Chelsea

RBKC’s decision not to determine current basement applications
November 18, 2014
New Office Relocation
February 9, 2015

02 December 2014- Press release from RBKC’s website

The Council has today (Tuesday 2 December) won its historic battle to limit the scale of basement development in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.

In its report just published, the Government’s Planning Inspector declares the Council’s proposals for tougher policies to be sound.

Basements will still be permitted but strict guidelines will now set limits on their scale. Highlights include a reduction in the maximum extent basements can extend under the garden, from 85 per cent to 50 per cent, with that 50 per cent being a single area of space; a restriction to a single storey in most cases (with exceptions for large sites); an outright ban on basement developments under listed buildings and a requirement for Construction Traffic Management Plans to be submitted alongside planning applications to help protect residents from the disturbance caused by these developments .

Commenting on the Planning Inspector’s announcement, Cabinet Member for Planning Policy, Cllr Tim Coleridge, said:

“Basements have been the single greatest planning concern our residents have expressed to us in living memory. Many have experienced years of misery from noise, vibration, dust and construction traffic.

“Two years ago we started drafting a policy to try and strike the right balance between addressing our residents’ concerns and the genuine need for people to expand their homes.

“It hasn’t been easy and basement developers have aggressively opposed us every step of the way. We are delighted that the Inspector agrees that we have got it right while at the same time praising us for our extensive public consultation.

“This ruling is a victory not only for the Council but also our residents who have been overwhelmingly supportive of what we have been trying to do.”

The new guidelines will formally be adopted on 21 January at the next Full Council meeting.

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