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Mr Ufuk Bahar BA(Hons) MA from Urbanist Architecture explains how good design can help you increase your chances of getting planning permission in a dense city like London.

Planning permission policies vary from council to council, however they all scrutinise one principle — good design. If you are looking to develop in a dense urban city like London, the points listed below should ensure you create a successful planning application.

Understand the Decision Maker

The councils in dense cities aim to raise the standard of design quality in the built environment when determining planning applications. This is to ensure their borough is seen as a welcoming, successful and creative place.

When a planning application is made, the design quality of the proposal is amongst the matters planning officers assess. They will not grant planning permission for poor quality or inappropriate design.

Design Over Everything

If you are proposing a development in the city, each council adheres to a similar set of policies. However, they will heavily scrutinise the scale, layout and appearance of each space.

In addition, each council will set a minimum standard to ensure adequate dwelling sizes, flat sizes and room sizes. It is an untold conception that the minimum standards set forth should be exceeded and not just closely met.

Start Right End Right

Someone who knows how to get planning permission in the city would never create a project that lacks good design. Why? Because they know securing planning permission STARTS with understanding what planning officers want. And then they figure out how to present it to them. Something magical happens when you combine architectural skills and planning knowledge with a desire to add value through good design.

Your Hassle Free Checklist to get Planning Permission:

Here are the five tips to help you get planning permission in any city:

  • Good Architect: An architect will not only help you develop a winning design but also will help you save time, effort and money. An architect will add space, value and comfort to your property. Find an architect who is knowledgeable, proficient, and experienced.
  • Good Analysis: It is absolutely crucial that your design is finalised not only by taking into account all of the planning policies but also the reasons of the refused planning applications in your council. By doing so, you will ultimately increase your chances of getting approval.
  • Good Drawings: The purpose of a drawing is to communicate the design ideas to other people in the simplest form possible. Make sure your architect prepares detailed planning drawings for your application, which clearly document and communicate your design.
  • Good Strategy: Your architect should tackle your project with fresh eyes and original ideas in order to deliver a completely bespoke design. Work with your architect to formulate a strategy that articulates your vision as clearly as possible.
  • Good Communication: Your planning officer will take into account significant design aspects of your project, such as use, layout, scale, appearance and access. Make sure your architect follows everything the officer requires throughout the assessment process of your planning application. Your architect will need to convince your planning officer before the decision date!

Neighbours: Is your nearest your dearest?

Planning permission is never guaranteed and your neighbours can object. However if your architect follows the tips above and works tirelessly to maintain the stylistic integrity of the property, and balances functionality with aesthetics, your chances of gaining approval are much improved.

Ufuk Bahar BA(Hons) MA is the managing director of Urbanist Architecture Ltd. He specializes in planning permission applications and creating inspiring contemporary home renovations, extensions and new build houses and flats.

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