What Is Sui Generis Planning?
What Is Sui Generis Planning?
Sui generis, a Latin term meaning “of its own kind,” is a label used to classify buildings that do not fit into any specific use class for planning permission purposes. The Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987 defines various use classes, and it states that if a land use changes within a use class, planning permission is not required.
However, planning permission is generally required for any changes involving activities within the sui generis category, which includes theaters, petrol filling stations, casinos, amusement centers and car hire businesses.
Some permitted development rights allow for movement between some sui generis uses and other uses. There is a common misconception that changing from an existing use class to a sui generis class always requires planning permission, but permission is only required if the sui generis use is significantly different from the existing one.
To clear up any confusion, a lawful development certificate can be requested which must provide a comprehensive and unambiguous description of the use, operations, or other issues for which it is to be granted.
It is important to provide a detailed explanation of the matter’s characteristics to prevent future problems with interpretation.
Can You Change Use Within Sui Generis?
No, you cannot change the use of a property within Sui Generis without a full planning application.
This applies whether you want to change it from a house of multiple occupancy (HMO) into a nightclub, or vice versa, or even if you are wanting to increase the number of occupants in an existing 10 bedroom HMO from 10 to 12 – in which case a Full Planning Application or Non-Material amendments application on the previously approved 10-bedroom HMO Application is needed.
Every property is unique and must be compliant with local planning/licencing regulations for any changes to be successful.
Sui Generis Planning Pros And Cons
Sui generis planning is a type of planning status that is unique and not classified by legislation. It is often used for large Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMOs) with seven or more people living in them, as they require planning permission to change the class to a ‘sui generis’ status.
The main benefit of sui generis planning is that it allows for flexible control over land use. This can help create proportionate development and protect employment uses. Additionally, it can provide a limited monopoly in exchange for full public disclosure, which can advance technology.
On the other hand, there are some potential challenges associated with sui generis protection. For example, some measures sought may not achieve the desired outcome and could hinder the equity-oriented goals of some traditional knowledge communities.
Additionally, there are concerns that it could be used as a deregulatory tool to remove the need to submit planning applications where the land use impact of change is considered to be the same or less than the existing use.
Overall, sui generis planning has both benefits and challenges associated with it. It can provide flexible control over land use and advance technology but could also hinder equity-oriented goals and be used as a deregulatory tool.