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Permission refused - not in keeping with the area


RichyC
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Just looking for some informal opinions. We originally put planning in for our home in March. Torbay planning dept have just come back to us with an email stating they aren't going to grant planning based on it not being in keeping with the area. There are no strong styles in our area at all, and we had no neighbouring objections (infact one was quite complementary in support) so although we thought it was rather contemporary looking, it was in no way over the top. Thr architect reiterated to us what his thoughts were and will be speaking to the Planners next week but I'm sure we will hit a brick wall. 

 

However, it would be nice to get others opinions of what happens when planning is refused based on a subjective reason rather than planning policy. 

 

Thanks in advance ,

 

Richard

 

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Edited by RichyC
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Have to agree with the planners I’m afraid, it looks very busy with too many ‘pointy bits’. You say there is no strong architectural style in the area but are there any common themes you could pick up on, and create a modern interpretation? Maybe simplify the design with one or two gables and lose that dormer, it looks like the architect got carried away with the triangular stencil. Sorry but you asked, hope that helps...

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I've no idea what the surroundings are like, so not a clue if it really is or is not in keeping with the area and the throw away comment at the end of the letter that it is 'rather busy' and therefore they will recommend it for refusal is the usual hogwash.   Ask them to give you the reference in the Local Plan where 'busy' is set out as a criteria for allowing permission and also where the definition of 'busy' is.  Better still use their term 'rather busy'....

 

Unless they can state chapter and verse what specific policies in the Local Plan this would fail on, it will be passed on appeal.  If they can't then they are toast.

 

Although personally I hate those pointy windows.....   But everyone to their own.

 

Simon

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We have often been asked to make some amendments by the planning officer.  Can you agree some amendments to the windows at the front?  It will get mighty hot in there in the mornings and if they are habitable rooms there will be no privacy and not much space for furniture.  Also bear in mind that glazed gables are very tricky for curtains and blinds, so a poor choice for bedrooms.

 

I think you could cut down the glazing at the front by up to 40% and still have a successfully resolved elevation.  Maybe just agree to an extension on the current application and get the amendments done tout suite.

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It's not a pretty elevation at all, can't imagine there's many areas that would fit in with!

I would have a discussion with the planners first - there's 6 different window geometries on the front elevation, looks like it could be easily rationalised, the proportions of the walls around the windows is also very clunky looking, is this style something that you've asked for but isn't necessarily what the architect usually does? Strikes me as a bit off in terms of the detail and style...

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Personally, i am not keen on the design, and i think it looks like an expensive and pain in the butt build. However, the planning officer is a typical tosser. As has been said if there is no particular street scene than what is the problem ? His own view. IMO he should not be allowed a view. It either meets policies or it don't.

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There’s a lot of glass there 

 

We are about to submit Lots of glass and glazed piles 

I’ve run the design by a Structual Engineer friend 

Hes advised to loose a couple of glazed pikes and scale down the glazed doors 

He said I’m only telling you what planners will tell you in six weeks time 

 

We are busy rethinking ready for submission in the morning 

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Don't be rude about the planner....especially as this blog is googleable, and it will hardly help if this is seen.

In defence of planners, they get attacked by all sides. Therefore they will stick to the rules. It is for you to find out what they are looking for (on behalf of their community) and make it fit.

 

What you submit has to look right in the context, but neither will they be keen on pastiche, so the glassy modern look is fine in principle. 

 

Got any pictures of the area/ nearby houses, esp modern ones?

Conceal the location from us by all means.

 

The  'busyness' is fine in a way, and preferable to a great mass of building. Often called 'articulation' and desired by planners. 

There is just too much articulation perhaps, unless it is meant to look a like a modern terrace.

 

On a positive, if they are only commenting on the appearance , then you will get this through at some stage.

 

I suggest, speak or email very politely in reply, saying that you note their advice, will revise the design, allow an extension of time for the process, and would welcome a short discussion of what troubles them and what they are looking for.

They have targets to achieve so cannot sit on this: they have to make a decision one way or the other unless you put it on hold, which I would advise.

 

OR blast on regardless, as councillors may like it, or appeal process officers may like it.

No, as above, talk to them.

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Also , you are well jammy . No neighbors objecting . You are sorted ! That’s half the battle . As others have said with no idea of nearby ‘styles’ or build line it’s hard to judge what you should do . Some photos of nearby properties would help and a Google overhead view or street view gives some context .

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These properties are within half mile of my plot. I didn't get any objections because my property isn't overlooked or overlooks any other.

 

This style isn't normal of the architects design, however we were trying to make it work within the confines of the footprint pretty much. This is why it steps back on several areas. What we were originally going for was to bring the front of the house inline with the centre left gable and just have one prominent gable where the front door is. The architect then stipulated that this may be more expensive than demolition and rebuild. 

 

The house is currently a bungalow. Interior has 11ft ground floor. The loftspace is currently 10.5ft to the ridge and we wanted to go upstairs. There is also an annex atthe back of the house that is simply joined in the proposed drawings. 

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1 minute ago, RichyC said:

t. I didn't get any objections because my property isn't overlooked or overlooks any other.

? Trust me you are lucky . A miserable shite group of vindictive neighbors can find 140 things to object to . Now that we can see the style of the neighbouring properties I would simply mimic them as near as you can to avoid the council objecting to the ‘ character ‘ . A precedence has been set follow it . Then with the money saved from your architects previous effort go underground and double the floor area ?

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Our design is about as far from the  local street scene as you can get. Think chocolate box 16th Century cottages right next to ours: a sharp Scandy design.

 

The key thing  - for us - was the micropolitics. In this case we knew (through our architect) of the LPA planner's preferences.  And he (the planner) has a weak spot for passivhaus design and sustainability. So, without promising that we would work to that standard, we promised to aim for it. All the informal local feedback we had was about the passivhaus design - and the built in sustainability. A SUDS design for example that had a water garden built in to the roof discharge, leading to a small attenuation pond , its  overflow goes into a pond set on the existing spring line. 

I'm not arguing that that's the route you should take; merely to look for the planner's triggers. And then use them.

 

And you can get a hint of those by reading his (hers) Delegated Reports. Worth the effort every time.

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1 minute ago, ToughButterCup said:

SUDS design for example

I think for some Suds is everything and for others it really is a complete joke .

Another joke aspect in my experience was a ‘garden landscape ‘ design . I knocked up something in 5 minutes . My Architect laughed and said it was rubbish and wouldn’t satisfy the council . My effort passed no issue and it was a child like pathetic approach deliberately. I did this because I sensed it was a tick box exercise for the council like SO many things …. 

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I think your architect has picked up on design features from those other houses but has taken the idea just a bit too far. I think if it was simplified a bit it would get through and be cheaper to build as well.

 

On another issue: Our house has some tall triangular windows in wood and maintenance is a pain. A scaffold tower helps but the steps make it hard to move from one window to the next. I would go for metal clad or upvc.

 

 

Edited by Temp
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I agree, looking at the existing house and nearby properties, it just needs simplifying a bit. There is no reason that this should end in a refusal, a conversation with the planners and your architect will resolve it quickly. Take the opportunity to make it less costly and easier to live with.

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Make your design more simple, and cheaper to build. You will be thankful in the end. Planners should have to be more specific though. If you are not in a conservation area than we should be able to introduce new styles to a street scene. My local planner wants everything to look like it was built in the 1930's. So although houses could be built 90+ years apart, they would all look the same...... That in my opinion is shite. London is not all a replica of St Pauls is it.

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14 hours ago, saveasteading said:

Therefore they will stick to the rules. It is for you to find out what they are looking for (on behalf of their community) and make it fit.


Oh I disagree, our planners wanted what they wanted, not the community and when I went to appeal they were told they were not abiding with their own policies (and I have fought planners before and won). Yes, I find your design a little fussy but I like classic lines. You have already found examples locally that fit with your design so yes you might have to compromise a little but don’t give up on your dream.

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1 minute ago, Mr Punter said:

Looking at this I would 100% go for demolish and rebuild.  Is this what is proposed?  There is no reason to stick with the existing footprint.

 

You will get a house with no compromises and can reclaim all the VAT.


+1, I have done many refurbishments in the past but found my new build so refreshing (and the VAT refund was useful).

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10 minutes ago, joe90 said:


+1, I have done many refurbishments in the past but found my new build so refreshing (and the VAT refund was useful).

Can’t wait to find a suitable plot or place to knock down to start a new build instead of refurbs.

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