Local planning projects recognised

Minister announces award winners and launches skills platform.

Communities across Scotland have been recognised at the Scottish Government’s relaunched Scottish Planning Innovation Awards (SPIA).

The overall winner was Planning Aid Scotland Live Life Morvern initiative, a community plan of action which pulls together local resources and ideas to build a sustainable future for the area.

Aberdeen City Council Beachfront Masterplan, which involved local children at the design stage, won the People’s Choice Award – voted for by the public.

Other winners of the awards include a community-led transformation project in Dundee, partnerships revitalising a heritage site in West Dunbartonshire, Fife Council’s approach to the future of the planning workforce and Nature Scot’s use of AI to help map the effects of climate change.

A new Digital Skills Portal was also announced at the award ceremony hosted by Planning Minister Joe FitzPatrick. The portal is a partnership between the Scottish Government and the Royal Town Planning Institute, which will help planners improve their digital skills. 

Mr FitzPatrick said:

“The SPIA winners represent excellence in innovative planning and it is great to celebrate their success with these relaunched awards.

“The future of planning is an exciting one and through the new Digital Skills Portal we are continuing our ambitious programme of improvement work.

“I am delighted at the variety of projects from across Scotland. The commitment to sustainable planning not only enriches environments but also the lives of people who use and live in these places.”


The award ceremony took place on 21 March 2024 at the site of previous winner, Carron Dams local nature reserve in Falkirk.

The winning projects are:

  • Overall SPIA winner: Planning Aid Scotland’s Live Life Morvern initiative.
  • People’s Choice Award: Aberdeen City Council’s City Centre and Beach Masterplan.
  • SPIA Award: Fife Council’s Creating Pathways into Planning project.
  • SPIA Award: Sustrans Scotland’s Stobswell Pocket Places rejuvenation, Dundee.
  • SPIA Award: West Dunbartonshire Council’s Rediscovering the Antonine Wall.
  • SPIA Award: NatureScot’s digital innovation.


  • Catrina Patterson – Inspiring Scotland
  • Neil McInroy – The Democracy Collective
  • Mandy Brown – Falkirk Council (Overall SAQP Winner 2019)
  • Paul Dodd – Scottish Futures Trust
  • Sarah Purves – Fife Council (Young Planner 2023)

The Digital Skills Portal aims to help new and existing Scottish planners improve how they approach their work by sharing information, advice, guidance and case studies.


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