Sadiq Khan calls for protection against PDR

3rd June 2016

Following CTU’s ‘Five Point Plan’ for the new Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan brings welcome news – he will protect small businesses from Permitted Development Rights.

The Mayor of London has today released a statement that supports our position on the damaging policy of Permitted Development Rights.

As we have argued since its introduction, permitted development rights decimates the capital’s supply of affordable work space, converting valuable offices in to housing (often luxury) and pushing up the rent of remaining offices to often unmanageable levels. Innovative startups and small businesses are leaving London for less expensive cities, to the detriment of our economy.

Finally, we have a Mayor who understands these concerns and has pledged to introduce new measures that will protect office space for small businesses, startups and entrepreneurs.

We are absolutely delighted to hear that the Mayor is interested in the topic, understands the value of startups to London’s economy, and is committed to protecting workspace. Before Sadiq Khan took on his new role, we put together a five point plan of how the new Mayor of London should support and empower London’s business improvement districts, business communities and economy.

#4: Fight to protect office space in the capital

Most of our business members are commercial tenants, yet recent reforms mean planning applications are not necessary on certain types of property.

Landlords can now convert their premises from an office to a residential unit much more quickly. The GLA Open Workspace Group’s Manifesto shares our view that this is a major threat to areas of the capital not exempt from this policy.

The Mayor of London shares our views that whilst housing is obviously urgently needed, it should not come at the expense of office space that houses the businesses that prop up our economy. We can have both affordable housing and offices.

As Sadiq has said:

“As mayor, I will be focusing on building new affordable homes on publicly and privately owned brownfield land, while changing the London Plan in order to protect viable business space and to create new start-up spaces in housing developments.”

We look forward to seeing the effects of this refreshed commitment to the health of London’s business community.

You can read the full article on the Mayor’s statement here.