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Planning in Scotland set to become quicker

In September last year, the Scottish Government embarked upon a review of the Scottish planning system. The review focussed on development planning, housing delivery, infrastructure, development management, community engagement and leadership, resources and skills. The report of the review by the independent panel was published at the end of May this year.

Last week, Scottish Ministers published their response to the report. This sets out ten key actions which will be taken forward as a priority. A clear area of priority is housing delivery, with Ministers committing to:

  • helping local authorities to strengthen their skills and capacity for housing delivery in the short term through a range of measures including financial assistance, where appropriate;
  • finalising the draft advice on planning for housing and infrastructure delivery, including a clear definition of effective housing land which will be consistently applied within the current system;
  • taking forward pilot Simplified Planning Zones for housing.

Other areas of focus include the extension of permitted development rights, and work to improve resources within planning authorities.

The Scottish government will now work with local authorities, developers and community groups to develop more detailed proposals for reform. The aim is to carry out a consultation later this year, and put a Planning Bill before the Scottish Parliament in 2017.

TLT will continue to monitor and report on the proposals for reform.

Contributor: Alexandra Holsgrove Jones

This publication is intended for general guidance and represents our understanding of the relevant law and practice as at July 2016. Specific advice should be sought for specific cases. For more information see our terms & conditions

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