House in Boot and Shoe Quarter Conservation Area of Northampton could become HMO

A decision on the planning application set to be made next week

Tuesday, 25th May 2021, 4:09 pm
Edith Street, Northampton

An application to change a house in the Boot and Shoe Quarter Conservation Area of Northampton into a home for four separate occupants is recommended for approval.

Permission is sought for a change of use from a dwelling/house in Edith Street to a house in multiple occupation (HMO) for four people.

The application is due before a meeting of West Northamptonshire Council's Northampton Local Area Planning Committee on Tuesday (June 1) and recommended for approval subject to conditions.

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A report states councillor Danielle Stone objects to the application and has called it in on the grounds of 'over development and unbalancing the make-up of the community.'

Private Sector Housing, Highways, the Town Centre Conservation Area Advisory Committee and the conservation officer raised no objections to the application.

Under third party and neighbour responses, three letters of objection were received raising comments which included: 'parking issues; permitted number of HIMOs in the vicinity has been exceeded; high density is not sympathetic to the nature of a residential area.'

Under the appraisal section, the report states: 'Council records evidence that there are seven other HIMOs within a 50m radius of the application site. The use of this property as a HIMO would equate to 7.9 % concentration.

'There is another live planning application within the 50m radius, which if it were approved would take the concentration to 8.9%.

'In both scenarios, concentration would fall within the 10% maximum threshold recommended by the council’s adopted supplementary planning document in relation to HIMOs.

'It is considered therefore that there would still be a reasonable mixture of house types within the area and a balance of community.'

The report states further on: 'A further consideration in respect of parking is the Northamptonshire Parking Standards, which states that a HIMO should provide on plot parking at the ratio of one parking space per bedroom.

'The proposed development would produce a demand for four parking spaces, which is an increase of two compared to the existing use, as the parking requirement for a three-bed dwelling is two spaces.

'However, there is no evidence to support that all the residents would own cars.

'It is noted that Edith Street is within a parking restricted zone and the number of permits provided by the Highway Authority would be controlled.'

The report goes on to state: 'The application property is located in the Boot and Shoe Quarter Conservation Area and, therefore, special attention must be paid to the desirability of preserving or enhancing the character or appearance of a conservation area, with great weight given the conservation of the heritage asset.

'The only external alteration proposed is a replacement window to the rear.

'As such and given that the conservation officer does not object to the application, it is considered that the proposal would not impact on the character or appearance of the conservation area.'

Under the planning balance and conclusion section, the report states: 'The proposed development would not lead to an unacceptable concentration of HIMOs within the locality that would adversely affect upon the character of the local area, street scene or the conservation area.

'Nor would the development have significant adverse impacts on neighbouring amenity or parking provision.'