New flats which are smaller
than a typical car parking space have been approved by Croydon Council, it is
The flats in Purley at 90 sq
ft and 97 sq ft – less than the average parking space at around 120 sq ft – have
been granted approval under permitted development rules. Although a studio flat
should normally be at least 400 sq ft this rule does not apply as the flats are
ostensibly part of a co-living scheme.
Construction of the flats has
not yet started. However, the Daily Mail says it is one of an increasing number
of ultra-small flats being developed or proposed in London and elsewhere. These are often formed
from the conversion of a commercial building under permitted development rules
and as such local authorities have few powers to control them.
High land costs plus the
need for affordable accommodation in the London
area have led some developers to find new and what might be called creative
ways to satisfy the demand. New permitted developers rules are enabling some
developers to push the boundaries in ways which were most certainly not the
original intention of rules designed to streamline the planning process and
increase housing supply. Many mainstream developers and investors will wonder
what kind of property development opportunity schemes of this kind actually are
and, more worryingly, what it might mean for the wider London property market.