The Only Way is Up

16th October 2018

According to research carried out by Knight Frank last year, 41,000 new dwellings could be built in Central London using rooftop development space, without altering the skyline.

Following the 2017 White Paper ‘Fixing our Broken Housing Market’, the revised National Planning Policy Framework was published in July this year which amongst other statements, set out that planning policies and decisions “should support opportunities to use airspace above existing residential and commercial premises for new homes”.

At the recent Conservative Party conference, the Secretary of State for Housing and Local Communities, James Brokenshire, reiterated the Government’s intention to look towards building up on existing buildings as a way of building more homes.

In a subsequent announcement, the Government set out their intention to consult on a new permitted development right to allow property owners to extend certain buildings upwards.

This provides a timely reminder for property owners or developers looking to maximise their existing portfolio, or developers looking to find new sites.

Colman Coyle has considerable experience acting for property owners and developers in the sale and purchase of such sites and understand the unique set of challenges both legal and technical in building on existing structures.

If you wish to discuss the issues raised, please contact Simon Tennant on +44(0)20 7354 3000 or


Simon Tennant