DCa has successfully obtained planning approval for the change of use of an existing agricultural barn to three separate dwellings under Class Q permitted development rights.
The site is located within the Green Belt in the St. Albans City & District Council area. The barn is not in a Conservation Area, but is close to a Grade II Listed farmhouse.
The barn is a substantial steel frame structure, capable of supporting the elements necessary to allow the building to be suitable for residential use. Existing secondary elements of structure, such as cladding rails and purlins will be retained and we propose to use structurally insulated panels (SIPS), a sustainable, composite form of construction, which would be fixed to the existing structure. The SIPPS will act as a diaphragm, transferring loads, via the structure, to the existing foundations. The new ‘windows, doors, roofs and exterior walls will therefore be fully carried on the existing structure; a requirement of Class Q.
The external appearance of the building will change, but the scale will remain unchanged. The external cladding will be vertical timber boarding which is a sustainable material and responsive to the open countryside context and the agricultural language of the barn.
The scheme creates new residential accommodation within the existing steel frame structure, within the criteria set by Class Q.