RIBA explains what the budget means for architects

The July 2015 budget contained changes that are set to have a big impact on architects, changes that the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) commented upon in an official press release.

In the statement Stephen Hodder, the president of RIBA, commented on the introduction of a new zonal system, changes to the way planning permission is awarded and the package of support that is being introduced for SME builders. The organisation largely welcomed the changes, Mr Hodder said:

“If fully implemented, these reforms represent a significant step forward in tackling the economic damage to the UK’s competitiveness created by the housing crisis.”

The introduction of new zonal systems should speed up the planning process, especially for those looking to develop brownfield sites. This change was welcome, but the president warned of the need to keep design and build quality high. Architects in North Wales and other areas will welcome the opportunity to work on more brownfield sites and come up with innovative plans that provide fill in housing that fits in with the buildings already in the area.

Penalties for local authorities who are holding up the planning process were also seen as a positive change that would help to speed up decisions. Although again the organisation warned that pressure to deal with application appeals faster could result in bigger delays elsewhere in the planning system.

Help for SME builders was also welcome because it should lead to more small, in-fill developments in towns and villages. These developments add to the housing stock without radically altering an area.

Posted by Adam Lloyd
July 23, 2015

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