Publication - Statistics

Planning performance statistics 2019/2020: annual

Published: 21 Jul 2020

Summary statistics on planning decision-making and timescales for April 2019 to March 2020 with historic data going back to 2012/13. It is based on data collected by the Scottish Government from Local and Planning Authorities as part of the Planning Performance Framework (introduced in 2012).

Contents
Planning performance statistics 2019/2020: annual
Key Findings

Key Findings

In 2019/20 Planning Authorities decided 26,585 local planning applications and 307 major planning applications, across Scotland.

Image with pictures of housing, industrial buildings and wind farm with text showing number of local and major applications processed in 2019/20

This includes applications with processing agreements where the developer and local authority agree on timescales for decisions.

Most Planning applications were approved.

Image with tick and text saying 94.2% of all applications approved

In 2019/20 94.2% of all applications with decisions were approved.

* Classification between local and major depends on the development type. For example, housing is classed as major when the application is for 50 or more dwellings or for sites that exceed two hectares, electricity generation is classed as major when the capacity of the generating station is or exceeds 20 megawatts.

Annual Trends for Local and Major Developments

Slight increase in average decision time for local developments.

Chart showing annual trends since 2015/16 in number of applications determined and average decision times for local developments

The average decision time for local developments was 9.1 weeks in 2019/20, slower by less than a day compared to last year which was the quickest since the start of this data collection in 2012/13.

Applications with processing agreements are not included in the calculation of decision times. The use of processing agreements for local applications has increased substantially since 2015/16 with 7.5% of all local developments in 2019/20 having processing agreements in place.

Increase in average decision time for major developments since the previous year.

Chart showing annual trends  since 2015/16 in number of applications determined and average decision times for major developments

In 2019/20 the average decision time for major development applications was 33.5 weeks, just under a week slower than the 32.6 weeks for the previous year.

Applications with processing agreements are not included in the calculation of decision times. The use of processing agreements for major applications has increased from 23.7% of all major applications in 2015/16 to 33.6% of major applications in 2019/20.

Number of planning applications continues to fall.

  • The number of local and major planning applications with decisions has decreased each year since 2013/14.
  • There were 789 fewer local development applications in 2019/20 than in 2018/19.
  • There were 17 fewer major development applications in 2019/20 than in 2018/19.

Planning Applications by Development Type

More than a third of planning applications were made by householders

Chart showing the proportion of the total number of determined applications by each development type

In 2019/20, householders making changes to their properties accounted for over a third of planning applications (12,958 of 34,158), 38% of all applications).

Local and major housing developments was the third largest group with 4,937 applications (14% of all applications).

Local development average decision times were quickest for householder applications.

Chart showing average decision times for local applications by development type

In 2019/20 the average decision time for householders making changes to their properties was 7.3 weeks.

The longest average decision times were for applications for mineral developments, 20.5 weeks.

Major development average decision times were quickest for waste management applications.

Chart showing average decision times for major applications by development type

In 2019/20 the quickest average decision time, waste management applications, was 16.6 weeks.

The longest decision times were for applications for mineral developments, 44.0 weeks.

Planning Applications for Housing Developments

More than half of local housing applications were processed by six authorities

Chart showing the proportion of total local housing applications determined by the six local authorities that processed the most.

In 2019/20 just over half (52%) of decisions on local housing applications were made by six local authorities.

Highland made the most, 871 (18% of the Scotland total). This was followed by Aberdeenshire (525), Argyll and Bute (350), Perth and Kinross (298), South Lanarkshire (243) and Moray (192).

The figures include applications subject to processing agreements.

40% of all major housing applications were processed by five local authorities

Chart showing the proportion of total major housing applications determined by the five local authorities that processed the most.

In 2019/20 five local authorities made 40% of decisions on major housing applications.

Glasgow City made the most (20), 11% of the Scotland total. This was followed by South Lanarkshire (15), City of Edinburgh (13), Fife (13) and North Lanarkshire (9).

The figures include applications subject to processing agreements.


Contact

Email: planstats@gov.scot