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PPS 6 (Addendum): Areas of Townscape Character
Policy ATC 1

Policy ATC 1 Demolition Control in an Area of Townscape Character
There will be a presumption in favour of retaining any building which makes a positive contribution to the character of an Area of Townscape Character. The Department will normally only permit the demolition of an unlisted building in an Area of Townscape Character where the building makes no material contribution to the distinctive character of the area.
Where permission for demolition is granted this will normally be conditional on prior agreement for the redevelopment of the site.

Justification and Amplification

2.1 Areas of Townscape Character (ATCs) exhibit a distinct character normally based on their historic built form or layout. For the most part this derives from the cumulative impact of the area's buildings, their setting, landscape and other locally important features.
2.2 The demolition of a building or buildings in an ATC can significantly erode the character, appearance and integrity of such areas. Demolition can be particularly damaging in cases where it is proposed in isolation, that is, where there are no proposals for the redevelopment of the site. In order to prevent demolition damaging the distinctive character and appearance of an ATC, the Department will operate a presumption in favour of retaining any building which makes a positive contribution to the character of the area.
2.3 To help secure the upkeep, vitality and appearance of ATCs the Department will permit proposals for the appropriate renovation and refurbishment of existing buildings for their continued use, or for alternative uses which accord with the Department's policies for the area. Any external alterations associated with such proposals will be required to maintain or enhance the overall character of the area and respect the built form of the ATC (see Policy ATC 2).
2.4 Where the demolition of an unlisted building in an ATC is proposed the key considerations that will be taken into account are:
  • the contribution of the building to the ATC and the effect of its demolition on the distinctive character of the area; and
  • whether the quality of proposals for the redevelopment of the site will maintain or enhance the distinctive character of the area.
2.5 Where the Department decides to permit demolition conditions will normally be imposed:
  • requiring the redevelopment of the site to be based on previously agreed detailed proposals; and
  • prohibiting demolition of the building until contracts have been signed for the approved redevelopment of the site.
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