Decision Maker: Cabinet
Decision status: Recommendations Approved (subject to call-in)
Is Key decision?: Yes
Is subject to call in?: No
To seek approval to introduce an article 4
direction to restrict changes of use from use class E (commercial)
to C3 (residential) within the Bootle Area Action Plan
The Cabinet considered the report of the Assistant Director of Place (Economic Growth and Housing which sought approval for the making of a non-immediate Article 4 Direction in relation to changes of Use from E to C3 in relation to shopping parades within the Bootle Area Action Plan Area. The Article 4 Direction would remove the permitted development rights that allow units within shopping parades to be changed to residential dwellings without the need for planning permission.
Decision Made: That:
(1) approval be given to the making of a non-immediate Article 4 Direction, attached in Appendix A, for the reasons set out in the report, in relation to changes of Use from use class E to C3 in selected areas of the Bootle Area Action Plan;
(2) approval be given to the required consultation; and
(3) approval be given to the preparation of a report, following notification and consultation, to seek Cabinet approval as to whether or not to confirm the non-immediate Article 4 Direction.
Reasons for the Decision:
To remove the permitted development rights that exist for units in shopping parades to convert to residential in parts of the Bootle without the need for planning permission. Once the Article 4 is enacted, planning permission will be required, and this would ensure the Council had control of those proposals. The Council would therefore be able to consider whether the proposals, either individually, or in combination, would have a detrimental impact on residential amenity and the vitality and viability of existing parades.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected:
Option 1 – Do not have an Article 4 Direction.
This is a possibility. It would mean business as usual, and that the Council would continue to have little control over conversions from units in Use Class E (such as in shopping parades) to Use Class C3 (residential). It may risk further fragmentation of shopping areas with a detrimental impact on the usability and health of those shopping areas. It may also mean that some accommodation provided may not be low quality and provide poor living conditions.
Option 2 – Article 4 Direction with an immediate effect.
This would mean that the control of use from units in parades to dwellings would be in place as soon as the direction was made. However, the Council would be liable to pay compensation to owners. This could be costly, and it was not clear how that would be financed.
Option 3 – Cover the whole of the Bootle Area Action Plan area with an Article 4 Direction.
The National Planning Policy Framework is clear that an Article 4 should be kept to the minimum area that is necessary. The Council are aware of Article 4 Directions being rejected by the Secretary of State due to proposed directions being applied too wide.
Report author: David Robinson
Publication date: 09/11/2022
Date of decision: 03/11/2022
Decided at meeting: 03/11/2022 - Cabinet