Four London Councils have failed to obtain an order from the High Court quashing the Government's decision to refuse to allow parts of their areas to be exempt from Permitted Development Rights which allow conversion of offices to residential use without the need to obtain planning permission.
The challenge had been brought by Richmond, Lambeth, Camden and Islington Councils.
The decision just before Christmas 2013 rejected arguments about the unfairness of the scoring system adopted by the Government for assessing Councils' claims for exemption, where points had been awarded not just for the scale of the economic impact of the introduction of the PD rights but also for the quality of the evidence supporting that assessment of economic impact and the inter-relationship of the call for exemption with existing planning policies.
It remains to be seen whether any of the Councils will want to appeal against this decision.
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