The Planning Context for Office-to-Residential Change of Use

  • Ben CliffordEmail author
  • Jessica Ferm
  • Nicola Livingstone
  • Patricia Canelas


This chapter considers in more detail the way that the planning system in England operates, especially in relation to governing the change of use of buildings. The evolution of the use class order is explained, as is the precise history of the 2013 reforms around permitted development for change of use of office buildings to residential. The way a new ‘prior approval’ system for such developments was introduced is outlined. This includes consideration of exemptions and governance tools such as ‘Article 4 directions’ which can somewhat counter the deregulation in certain circumstances.


Development Planning Prior approval Article 4 direction Permitted development Use class order 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ben Clifford
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jessica Ferm
    • 2
  • Nicola Livingstone
    • 3
  • Patricia Canelas
    • 4
  1. 1.Bartlett School of PlanningUniversity College LondonLondonUK
  2. 2.Bartlett School of PlanningUniversity College LondonLondonUK
  3. 3.Bartlett School of PlanningUniversity College LondonLondonUK
  4. 4.Bartlett School of PlanningUniversity College LondonLondonUK

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