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MP welcomes PM blueprint for planning reform


30th June 2020

West Worcestershire MP Harriett Baldwin has welcomed proposals which will see major reforms to the planning system to help the economy to bounce back from the Covid crisis.

The Prime Minister has announced £5 billion to invest in Britain’s infrastructure, as part of the New Deal for Britain. The package of measures, including improving town centres, is designed to upgrade Britain’s infrastructure and skills to fuel economic recovery across the UK.

New regulations will give greater freedom for buildings and land in our town centres to change use without planning permission and create new homes from the regeneration of vacant and redundant buildings.

Under the new rules, existing commercial properties, including newly vacant shops, can be converted into residential housing more easily, in a move to kick start the construction industry and speed up rebuilding.

Harriett has been working closely with local retailers over recent months to assess the right conditions which will help local businesses to bounce back as the economy is unlocked and more people are encouraged to visit high streets for non-essential shopping.

Harriett commented: “One of the clear challenges that we face is how to help retailers to compete better with their online-only competitors and I welcome all initiatives to encourage more people onto the high streets again.

“I do worry that some business will find that they need to leave their high street presence so I welcome these important measures which will help change empty shops into homes.”



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