Transforming planning

Changes to make planning system more effective.

Proposals to transform the approach to planning for homes and infrastructure projects have been put forward by the Scottish Government.

The ‘Places, People and Planning’ position statement sets out aspirations for a more effective system, which supports business while working with communities to ensure development happens in the right places.

The statement takes account of views put forward in an extensive consultation exercise, which found widespread public interest in how to improve planning. It provides an update on proposals for improving development planning, empowering communities and streamlining the planning process.

Meanwhile, the results of a national survey by YoungScot are also published today and will inform future reforms. This found that many young people are keen to have a say in planning their local communities.

Kevin Stewart, Minister for Local Government and Housing, said:

“We want to take forward changes that make a real difference to planning in Scotland – ensuring we have a system that can deliver the quality homes, buildings and modern infrastructure we need to make great places in the future.

“I was delighted with the response to the consultation and that so many individuals and communities took the time to share their views.  I am listening carefully to what people have to say about their experiences of the planning system – and how we can make it better. 

“We need to strike a balance in addressing the many issues raised. It is crucial that planning helps drive forward inclusive growth by enabling high quality development in a way that involves local people as fully as possible.”


The position statement and accompanying Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) Report, which sets out the environmental impacts of the proposed changes, are open for consultation until 11 August. 

No decisions have been made on the content of a future Planning Bill at this stage and further views will be taken into account as we move towards finalising the proposals for change.

In January, the Scottish Government published a consultation on twenty proposals for change in Places, People and Planning.  Along with the position statement, which provides an update on the programme of reform, the analysis of responses to the consultation has been published. 

For more information, and associated links, visit the reforming the planning system pages on


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