Policy actions  2 of 3

Examining development plans 

Planning authorities must create local development plans for their area and provide an opportunity for the public to make representations about the plan.

Development plans must be prepared at intervals of no more than 10 years or when required by the Scottish Ministers.

In preparing the proposed plan the planning authority must have regard to the evidence report that has successfully completed the gate check stage.

If there are any unresolved representations, the authority must submit the plan to the Scottish Ministers for examination. Ministers appoint our reporters to carry this out, after which they will submit a report to the planning authority with their recommendations on changes to the plan.

We have published guidance for people who have raised representations on a development plan, which explains the process in detail.

See lists of current and completed gate checks and development plan examinations.

Development planning processes and our role

Evidence report preparation

The evidence report is an early stage of development plan preparation. Planning authorities must prepare an evidence report that contains sufficient information to enable them to prepare their Local Development Plan (LDP). To do this the authority will collect evidence and data in collaboration with a range of stakeholders including key agencies, community organisations and the public at large including young people.

Gate check process

Once a planning authority has completed and approved its evidence report it must submit it to the Scottish Ministers for assessment. This ‘assessment’ is called the gate check and it is carried out by the Planning and Environmental Appeals Division (DPEA). It is the stage in the process where it will be decided whether the planning authority has enough information to prepare an LDP.

We have published guidance for parties which explains the process in detail  in reporter guidance note 26. .

See our feedback to planning authorities currently preparing their evidence reports. 

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