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The UK Government wants to make it easier to convert offices to residential use without full planning permission to help solve London's housing shortage. But it runs the risk of simply turning valuable commercial space into more empty houses owned by foreign millionaires, as Zoe Green discusses.

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The Global Urbanist is an online magazine reviewing urban affairs and urban development issues in cities throughout the developed and developing world.

Its readers are drawn from the urban policy and international development sectors, and include urban planners, officers in local, national or international government agencies, civil society leaders, and researchers.

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