Publication - Consultation paper

Local development planning - regulations and guidance consultation: part D - interim impact assessments

Published: 17 Dec 2021

Part D of the local development planning - regulations and guidance consultation includes the following impact assessments: strategic environmental, business and regulatory, equalities, fairer Scotland duty, child rights and wellbeing and island communities.

Local development planning - regulations and guidance consultation: part D - interim impact assessments
Interim Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment (BRIA)

Interim Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment (BRIA)

Introduction

15. This Interim Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment considers the likely impacts of proposed secondary legislation and guidance that it is intended to introduce to reflect changes made to local development planning in the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019, which amended the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997. It covers both proposals for regulations and draft advice on implementing legislative requirements and policy expectations.

16. Local Development Plans (LDPs) set out how our local places will change into the future, including where development should and shouldn't happen. It is a legal requirement for planning authorities to prepare LDPs. They form part of the statutory 'development plan' and will, alongside the National Planning Framework, be the basis for all decisions on planning applications.

17. Further background is set out in the consultation paper.

What is a Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment?

18. A Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment (BRIA) looks at the likely costs, benefits and risks of any proposed primary or secondary legislation. It also covers voluntary regulation, codes of practice, guidance, or policy changes that may have an impact on the public, private or third sector.

19. The BRIA explains:

  • the reason why the Scottish Government is proposing to intervene;
  • options the Scottish Government is considering, and which one is preferred;
  • how and to what extent new policies may impact on Scottish Government, business and on Scotland's competitiveness;
  • the estimated costs and benefits of proposed measures.

20. This BRIA focusses on the proposals for new regulations and guidance on Local Development Plans in the Scottish planning system. The proposed regulations and guidance are part of our wider work on planning reform and implementing the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (the 2019 Act) for which a BRIA was previously undertaken. The proposals for regulations and guidance on LDPs should be viewed within the context of the overarching provisions on LDPs as set out in the Planning Act.

Objective

21. There is strong support for a plan-led planning system in Scotland. The Scottish Government's ongoing programme of planning reform seeks to strengthen and simplify LDPs. We want to refocus plans on the outcomes that they deliver for people and places, rather than the preparation process. We want plans to be informed by consultation and collaboration so that they are relevant, and accessible and interest people. We want this new approach to LDPs to result in new style plans which support the management and use of land in the long term public interest.

22. The preparation of the consultation documents has been informed through engaging with a range of stakeholders. The Development Planning Working Group was one of 4 groups convened to support implementation of the 2019 Act. It was a cross-sector group comprising over 30 individuals. At the first meeting, in December 2019, members proposed that subgroups should be formed to explore specific areas of implementation in more detail. Three subgroups were set up to consider: scope and content of future LDPs; procedures for preparing LDPs; and details of the Evidence Report & Gate Check.

23. The sub-groups convened online during the pandemic, at the end of 2020 and start of 2021. They were provided with written material, including work briefs and discussion papers, and a library of relevant information was made available online to support their conversations. The sub-groups discussed their relevant topics and provided written input to inform the preparation of the consultation documents.

Regulations

24. Primary legislation, substantially amended by the 2019 Act, provides the framework for LDPs and includes detail on many of the procedures to be followed in preparing plans. It also delegates powers to prepare secondary legislation on a range of detailed requirements. Given the amount of change, the Scottish Government has worked on the basis of keeping regulations to the minimum necessary. This view was also reflected by the Procedures Subgroup, who noted there are already many procedures set out in primary legislation.

25. The regulations consultation sets out proposals for secondary legislation and includes Draft Regulations. It is structured to reflect the provisions of the primary legislation and proposes the following:

  • new regulations relating to the Evidence Report and its assessment: These are new parts of the LDP process and it is proposed to mirror the requirements already in place for the Examination of LDPs. This will enable consistency for those implementing the requirements and assist stakeholders understanding of the processes.
  • new regulations relating to the Development Plan Scheme (DPS): These add to existing regulations to require planning authorities to specify the month a plan is expected to be adopted and to identify any changes to the timetable from the previous DPS, along with an explanation for that change.
  • removing references to aspects of the LDP process that will no longer be part of the system: For example Monitoring Statements, Main Issues Reports and Strategic Development Plans.
  • updating references to ensure accuracy: For example to primary legislation and Delivery Programmes (re-named from Action Programmes).
  • updating the definition of Key Agencies: This is to reflect changes to the following organisations since 2008 - NatureScot, Historic Environment Scotland and the emergence of South of Scotland Enterprise.
  • consolidation of the requirements of the Town and Country Planning (Hazardous Substances) (Scotland) Regulations 2015, already in place.

Guidance

26. At present, information on implementing the current development planning legislation is set out in Circular 6/2013. The approach at the time was to allow authorities to meet the requirements as they saw appropriate rather than provide detailed information on Ministers expectations. A consequence of the previous approach was that aspects of the system were not implemented as initially intended, for example supplementary guidance and Main Issues Reports. These parts of the process have now been removed from the system through the 2019 Act.

27. Given the extent of the legislative changes, the Scottish Government consider that the detail of Scottish Ministers' expectations for implementation of the 2019 Act should be set out in guidance. This will enable us to be clearer on Ministers intentions and expectations for new style plans. It will also provide maximum flexibility and resilience, allowing experience from implementing the new system to be incorporated into updated guidance as it emerges.

28. The Draft Guidance is structured in three sections, each fulfilling a different purpose:

  • Section 1 sets out the overall aims and expectations for new style plans. It provides key messages of what they should be like in the future, emphasising they should be delivery-focused, place-based and people-centred.
  • Section 2 sets out the process of how to achieve a new style plan. It covers the legislative requirements, how these are met and responsibilities of different stakeholders. It provides detail on the expectations for new Evidence Reports, emphasises 'delivery' throughout the stages of plan preparation and provides guidance on integrating LDP and Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) processes.
  • Section 3 sets out detailed thematic guidance on how new style plans are expected to implement the draft National Planning Framework 4 (NPF4) policies for the development and use of land. The content of this section would previously have been in Scottish Planning Policy (SPP), however with the change in status of NPF and its incorporation of policy, this document is an appropriate document for this guidance.

29. The above structure enables the guidance to be a live document: it has the potential to be reviewed in parts and offers access to the different types of information as needed by different stakeholders. It also provides flexibility to adapt as lessons are learned from how the new system is implemented.

Rationale for Government Intervention

30. The 2019 Act amended the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997, including on the provisions for local development plans (LDPs) and on the detail of many of the procedures to be followed in preparing plans. It also gives the Scottish Ministers powers to prepare secondary legislation - regulations - concerning a range of related matters. The changes that are being proposed are necessary to ensure that the new legislative requirements operate effectively and in a way that is compatible with the Scottish Government's wider policy objectives for the planning system.

Sectors and Groups Affected

31. This is an Interim BRIA and is not intended to be a definitive statement or a full assessment of impacts. It does however, present preliminary and indicative impacts that will require further consideration by the Scottish Government to inform the decision making process on the regulations and guidance for local development plans after the consultation has taken place and prior to them being finalised.

32. The proposed regulations and guidance look to implement the provisions of the amended 1997 Act and to deliver on the national planning priorities that will be set out in NPF4. The impacts of the changes in the Act have already been subject to assessment and the proposals in Draft NPF4 are the subject of a separate assessment. This Interim BRIA is not intended to cover the costs and benefits of either the Planning Act or draft NPF4.

Business

33. The contents of local development plans will be relevant to all business sectors across Scotland who are likely, in the future, to engage with the planning system through the submission of planning applications. LDPs will influence how decisions on such applications are made. The most significant impacts will be on those businesses that are dependent on the planning system for identifying new sites for their ongoing operations. This will, in particular, include housebuilders, business, retail and commercial property developers, the renewable energy sector, digital network providers, tourism and culture, and the minerals and aquaculture sectors.

Local authorities

34. The new processes will have significant impacts on local authority teams involved in the LDP process and how they take this work forward. The proposals stem from recent legislative changes that were intended to strengthen LDPs, reducing the time spent on producing plans and giving them a greater focus on place and delivery. The proposed regulations and guidance is necessary to provide additional detail to the requirements set out in primary legislation and are intended to recognise the benefit in working to the principle that regulations are kept to the minimum necessary and that much of the detail of Scottish Ministers' expectations for implementation of the 2019 Act should be set out in guidance.

Communities and the third sector

35. NPF4 will impact on communities and the third sector as they focus on the future of the places where people live, work, learn and play. The preparation process involves opportunity for public involvement so the extent that the proposals will impact on these groups will be dependent on their willingness and need to become involved in these processes.

Public bodies

36. Key agencies are involved at all stages of the plan-making process, providing information to inform environmental reports and the development of the policies in the plan. Plans will allocate land for new development and infrastructure so will have the potential to impact on the decisions, plans and strategies made by infrastructure providers in the areas of flood management, housing, transport and education, as examples.

Consultation

Within Government

37. The responsibility for these issues lies with Planning and Architecture Division (PAD) and the proposals have been developed by a core team with assistance from colleagues across the Division, particularly in relation to the thematic guidance in Part C. Additionally, PAD has engaged with the Directorate for Planning and Environmental Appeals, Directorate for Housing and Social Justice and Transport Scotland, as well as wider government portfolios as relevant including on economic development, energy, environment, marine, tourism and culture sectors.

Public Consultation

38. Collaboration has informed the preparation of the consultation on the proposals for regulations and draft guidance. It follows on from the extensive engagement undertaken prior to the Planning (Scotland) Bill being considered by the Scottish Parliament.

39. Following the passage of the 2019 Act, four working groups were convened to support the Transforming Planning in Practice programme, with one group focussing on Development Planning. It comprised over 30 individuals from across sectors: the public sector, including Heads of Planning Scotland and other national agencies; the private sector, including Homes for Scotland, Scottish Property Federation, Scottish Renewables and Scottish Planning Consultants Forum; the community and environmental sectors, including PAS, a community council and Scottish Environment LINK; professional institutes, including the Royal Town Planning Institute, Institute of Civil Engineers and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors; and other relevant organisations.

40. The larger group divided into three subgroups to explore the following areas in more detail:

  • scope and content of future LDPs,
  • procedures for preparing LDPS, and
  • the detail of the Evidence Report & Gate Check.

41. Extensive public consultation has also taken place to inform the preparation of Draft NPF4. This has involved workshops, a call for ideas and public consultation on a Position Statement. Comments relevant to the role of LDPs in delivering spatial and planning policies that were received via these processes were taken into account when developing proposals for development planning regulation and guidance.

Options

42. This section looks at the proposed changes and the options considered.

Consequential amendments and updates to regulations:

43. Option 1: Amendments are proposed to existing provisions to broadly update and align these with wider changes to circumstances including changes introduced through the 2019 Act: These include:

  • preparation and monitoring of local development plans: matters to be taken into account / had regard to in preparing LDPs
  • examination of LDP: costs, procedures and assessment
  • examination of LDP – grounds for declining to follow recommendations
  • delivery programmes – form, content and procedures and on seeking views
  • meaning of Key Agency
  • preparation and publication of proposed LDPs

44. Further information on the proposed changes is provided in Annex A of Part B of the consultation paper.

45. Option 1a: As above but with additional substantive changes to provisions on the publication of proposed LDPs. Currently, existing provisions include requirements to publish a note in a local newspaper and on the internet; sending notice to identified stakeholders; making a copy of the Plan available for inspection at the planning authority offices and libraries; and, publishing it on the internet.

46. Option 2 - 'Do Nothing.' This is not considered to be an option – this would leave regulations out of date. Views are however invited on all of the proposed changes through the consultation process.

47. Benefits: Under Option 1 the proposed changes can help to ensure clarity for all concerned and to align the new LDP process with wider changes. Under Option 1a we do not consider there are any benefits from any additional substantive changes to publication arrangements for LDPs and consider the current arrangements strike an appropriate balance in ensuring those who wish to comment are made aware of the opportunity to do so.

48. There are no benefits associated with a 'Do Nothing' option.

49. Costs: Under Option 1, planning authorities will need to familiarise themselves with the changes to regulations. These are however taking place in the context of implementing wider structural changes to the development planning process, potential savings for which were estimated at the time of the Planning Bill to be between £21.42m to £31.5m over 10 years for planning authorities.

50. Under Option 1a, a reduction in publication requirements could reduce upfront costs, e.g. of publication fees. It follows that any substantive additional publication requirements could introduce new administrative requirements for authorities from implementing the new procedures as well as new up- front costs.

51. The costs of the proposals on business will depend on the level of involvement in the local development plan and the approach taken by each organisation. Representatives of groups with business interests were members of the sub-groups, including house-builders, consultants and property developers. The views of business and industry interests will be invited as part of the public consultation process.

52. There are no costs arising from a 'do nothing' option.

Matters to be addressed in regulations:

53. Option 1: New regulations are proposed on the following matters relating to the preparation of Evidence Reports. The proposed provisions will:

  • require the Scottish Ministers to notify the planning authority when a person has been appointed to assess the Evidence Report and their name.
  • provide that the appointed person is able to request further representations or further information be provided in connection with the assessment of the Evidence Report.
  • require that the general costs of assessing the Evidence Report incurred by the Scottish Ministers or appointed person are to be met by the planning authority.
  • require the planning authority to provide to the appointed person, electronic copies of any documents referred to in the Evidence Report.

54. A separate consultation will follow to inform the meaning of Gypsies and Travellers in relation to the requirements for the Evidence Report.

55. Option 2 - 'Do Nothing.' 'This is not considered to be an option - the evidence report is a new early stage of plan preparation. Section 16B(13) of the Act provides for Scottish Ministers to make regulations relating to the assessment of the evidence report, the 'gate-check stage', including costs, procedures and what is to be assessed.

56. Benefits: Under Option 1 the new regulations will give effect to the relevant section of the Planning Act and will support the implementation in practice of wider structural changes to the planning system which, when taken together, are intended to significantly strengthen LDPs to give a greater focus on place and delivery.

57. There are no benefits associated with a 'Do Nothing' option.

58. Costs: Under Option 1, planning authorities will need to familiarise themselves with the new regulations. These are however taking place in the context of implementing wider structural changes to the development planning process, potential savings for which were estimated at the time of the Planning Bill to be between £21.42m to £31.5m over 10 years for planning authorities.

59. The costs of the proposals on business will depend on the level of involvement in the local development plan and the approach taken by each organisation. Representatives of groups with business interests were members of the sub-groups, including house-builders, consultants and property developers. The views of business and industry interests will be invited as part of the public consultation process.

Matters to be addressed in guidance:

60. Option 1: It is proposed that the following matters are addressed in guidance rather than through regulations:

  • Evidence Report for preparation of local development plans: consultation and engagement
  • Evidence Report for preparation of local development plans: matters to be set out in the evidence report
  • Evidence Report: format
  • Evidence Report: minimum evidence requirements
  • Consultations on the proposed plan / prior to examination

61. Additionally, Section 3 sets out detailed thematic guidance on how plans are expected to implement NPF4 policies in the development plan. Previously, plans included planning policies specific to the development plan area. However, NPF4 will replace most local policies with national planning policies that apply across Scotland. This is intended to free up time and resources for local authorities to focus on spatial elements in their development plans.

62. Option 2 - 'Do Nothing.' This option could lead to uncertainty as to how the changes to the planning system should be implemented locally, and could lead to duplication of effort between different authorities.

63. Option 3 – New provisions in regulations: This option could limit opportunity for Planning Authorities to take into account local circumstances, and frustrate opportunities for best practice to evolve as the new system beds in and could add unnecessary regulatory burden. Views are however invited on all of the proposed changes through the consultation process.

64. Benefits: Option 1 will give flexibility to planning authorities to take account of local circumstances and will better allow for new processes to evolve and for lessons from practice to inform continuous improvement. Conversely, Option 3 is considered to offer increased certainty but could reduce flexibility at the local level.

65. There are no benefits considered to arise under Option 2.

Costs

66. As previously indicated, the changes made to development planning in the Planning Bill were estimated to deliver potential saving to planning authorities of between £21.42m to £31.5m over a ten year period. The changes were not expected to have any overall impact on costs for developers, landowners, communities and individuals. Costs would, however, be dependent on the level of involvement in the local development plan and the approach taken by each organisation. The proposals in the draft guidance will need to be considered in this context whilst acknowledging and assessing any addition burdens that will be placed on stakeholders by new requirements in the guidance.

67. Comprehensive guidance is being proposed which is intended to allow Scottish Ministers to set out clearly their intentions and expectations for the new system for preparing LDPs. This guidance builds on that already included in Scottish Planning Policy, Scottish Government Planning Circulars and good practice at both the national and local level.

68. Part C of the guidance will, in particular, include advice that is intended to ensure that LDPs take account of the spatial and national policies that will be set out in NPF4. Public consultation is currently taking place on these policies.

69. An Interim BRIA was prepared to consider the likely costs and benefits associated with the proposals in draft NPF4 and a questionnaire is to be issued to stakeholders so that more detailed consideration can be given to the range of policy proposals. The intention is for this process to also consider the likely costs and benefits associated with the proposals in Part C of the guidance to gain a better understanding of whether additional costs will be associated with, for example, information requirements required to inform the Evidence Report (these are included at Annex A) or issues that LDPs will need to identify as part of the plan making process (Annex B).

70. The questionnaire will be sent to the representative bodies of those industries who most directly engage with the planning system for onward transmission to their member organisations. The questionnaire will also be sent to key agencies, local authorities and third sector bodies. It will ask for information on the current costs of engaging with the planning system and views on the possible impacts of the proposals (both individually and cumulatively) in the consultation paper and draft NPF4 on those costs. Responses to the questionnaire will be reflected in the final BRIA.

71. The questionnaire will be issued shortly. Stakeholders wishing to ensure that they receive a copy of the questionnaire directly should confirm the necessary contact details by e-mailing scotplan@gov.scot.

Scottish Firms Impact Test

72. The proposed changes are not expected to have any overall impact on Scottish Firms. Costs arising from engagement with the development plan process will depend on the level of involvement and the approach taken by each organisation. Views from business and industry interests are however invited as part of the public consultation process.

Competition Assessment

73. There are no obvious impacts on competition from the proposed regulations or guidance, though views are being sought on this Interim BRIA as part of our consultation process.

Consumer Assessment

74. The Scottish Government definition of a consumer is "anyone who buys goods or digital content, or uses goods or services either in the private or public sector, now or in the future". It is not anticipated that the proposed regulations or guidance will have any impact on consumers though views are being sought on this Interim BRIA as part of our consultation process.

Test run of business forms

75. The proposed regulations and guidance would not introduce any new forms for business etc. to complete.

Digital Impact Test

76. Publicity arrangements for LDPs are set out in the amended Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997. The proposed Regulations include additional requirements relating to publishing material on the internet. However, such measures are in addition to other publicity requirements (newspapers, etc.) so it is not considered that the proposed Regulations will have any impact on digital technologies or on traditional or offline businesses.

Legal Aid Impact Test

77. These changes would not affect claims for legal aid.

Enforcement, Sanctions and Monitoring

78. LDPs are subject to review under the provisions set out in the amended Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997.

Post-implementation Review

79. Evidence gathered during the consultation will help inform the full BRIA which will be completed when we finalise work on the regulations and guidance.

80. The introduction to the consultation indicates that the draft guidance is intended to be a live document, and that it is structured in parts to offer access to the different types of information as needed by different audiences. This also enables the parts to be reviewed individually so that it can adapt and evolve as we learn how the new LDP system in implemented in practice.

Summary and Recommendation

81. The above proposals for new regulations and guidance have emerged from legislative requirements set out in the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 and following an extensive review of the planning system.

82. The above proposals aim to strike a balance between the need for transparency and clarity on one hand to support the implementation in practice of the new system, whilst allowing a degree of flexibility to allow for best practice to evolve as the new system beds in.

Declaration and Publication

83. I have read the business and regulatory impact assessment and I am satisfied that, given the available evidence, it represents a reasonable view of the likely costs, benefits and impact of the leading options. I am satisfied that business impact has been/will be assessed with the support of businesses in Scotland.

Signed:

Date: 16 December 2021

Tom Arthur MSP

Minister for Public Finance, Planning and Community Wealth

Scottish Government Contact point

Planning & Architecture Division - LDPRegsandGuidance@gov.scot

Annex A

Indicative Lists of sources / types of information to inform the Evidence Report

Sustainable Places

  • National developments identified in the NPF within the plan area, or any other spatial implications of development contributing to a wider national development
  • Strategic land use tensions
  • Sources and scale of climate change emissions
  • Heat related climate risks
  • Local Biodiversity Action Plan
  • Socio-economic performance and wellbeing
  • Regional Spatial Strategy (for plan area or adjoining area)
  • Any LDP, or LDP for an area adjoining the LDP area

Productive Places

  • Business Land Audits
  • Employment Land Requirements
  • Analysis of employment need, local poverty, disadvantage and inequality
  • Areas of constraint for Green energy
  • National waste management plan
  • Local waste data
  • Data on permitted minerals reserves
  • Data on areas affected by coal mining and Development high risk areas
  • Gaps in digital coverage & details of programmed investment in digital

Distinctive Places

  • Town Centre Audits & Strategies
  • Strategies and action plans relating to the historic environment and assets
  • Population stats and projections
  • Vacant & Derelict Land
  • Empty Buildings At Risk
  • Rural types, population distribution and demographic profile
  • Local Biodiversity Action Plan
  • Data on peat and carbon rich soils
  • Forestry & Woodland Strategy. Native Woodland Survey of Scotland and Ancient woodland Inventory, TPOs
  • Review of areas designated for their local landscape value and nature conservation interests
  • Coastal evidence and information

Liveable Places

  • Details of existing 20 minute neighbourhoods, and areas not currently well-served as 20 minute communities
  • Community Facilities
  • Baseline infrastructure information and data
  • Audit of Infrastructure
    • Communications digital + telecoms
    • Transport
    • Water management
    • Energy supplies
    • Health & social care services
    • Education
    • Natural infrastructure
    • Play
  • Existing and programmed infrastructure provision
  • Audit of the transport infrastructure and capacity of the area
  • Regional Transport Strategy
  • Local Transport Strategy
  • Baseline transport information and data
  • HNDA completed in full, and confirmed as robust and credible to inform the Housing Land Requirement
  • Housing Land Audit
  • Local Housing Strategy and Strategic Housing Investment Plan
  • The list of people seeking to acquire land for self-build
  • Heat mapping
  • Blue Green Infrastructure
    • Open Space Strategy
    • Play Sufficiency Assessment
    • Core Paths / Access Rights
  • Strategic Flood Risk Assessment
  • River basin management plan
  • Significant Health Issue
  • Poor Air Quality

Annex B

Sustainable Places

Spatial Strategies: Sustainable Places

Approach

  • based on draft NPF4's six overarching spatial principles (compact growth, local living, balanced development conserving and recycling assets, urban and rural synergy and just transition) and action area priorities
  • based on an understanding of the emissions likely to be generated by the plan's proposals
  • takes into account long term future climate risks
  • must seek to minimise GHG emissions and maximise emissions reduction
  • address risks to investment proposals and infrastructure, as well as people who are most likely to be disadvantaged by climate change
  • designed to manage heat related climate risks through development, and retrofit solutions in existing areas for individual buildings and public spaces.
  • founded on the Place Principle, Creating Places and six qualities
  • responds to strategic land use tensions, recognising the need for significant difficult decisions - take account of tackling the twin climate and nature crises and the fundamental role of Scotland's natural and historic environment in supporting our economy, health, wellbeing and resilience to climate change
  • takes a design led approach - using new development to improve existing places should be considered as a first priority, ensuring this aligns with goals for net zero and biodiversity
  • address community wealth building priorities by reflecting a people-centred approach to local economic development

Identify

  • areas where development is unlikely to be supported due to the predicted effects of climate change
  • the potential for negative emissions technologies in the area, including emissions capture, storage and carbon utilisation and the Spatial Strategy should support their deployment through safeguarding land and enabling links between parts of the system
  • areas for co-locating developments with a high heat demand, large scale thermal storage opportunities and sources of low and zero emission heat supply
  • requirements for ancillary infrastructure to support renewable heat solutions (energy centres, grid infrastructure)
  • development that can improve existing places
  • where more detailed design briefs, masterplans and design codes are to be prepared to provide most benefit, in accordance with the six qualities, Place Standard considerations and Designing Streets

Liveable Places

Spatial Strategies: Liveable Places

Approach

  • promotes potential for creating and enhancing 20 minute neighbourhoods
  • public convenience provision aligns with wider policies relating to 20 minute neighbourhoods and town centres
  • follows an Infrastructure First approach
  • includes land for homes in locations that shape existing and create new great places for people to live
  • aims to reduce the need to travel by prioritising accessible locations for future development
  • follows the sustainable travel and investment hierarchies
  • allocations chosen in locations that can best contribute to enhancing and delivering key green networks and priorities
  • takes account of the need to tackle geographical disparities in wealth and health, and reduce inequalities
  • prioritises investment in communities experiencing deprivation
  • informed by land use emissions modelling where appropriate
  • informed by heat mapping to inform the potential for co-locating developments with a high heat demand together with or alongside sources of heat supply
  • reflects Local Heat and Energy Efficiency Strategy
  • aims to create vibrant, healthy and safe places and seeks to tackle health inequalities particularly in places experiencing the most disadvantage

Identify

  • identify infrastructure requirements to deliver the Spatial Strategy
  • identify opportunities for community facilities in areas where there is no, limited or inaccessible provision
  • allocate land to meet the Housing Land Requirement in sustainable locations that create quality places for people to live
  • identify land to meet established needs for specialist and accessible homes, as well as accommodation for Gypsy Travellers and Travelling Show-people
  • identify and designate appropriate areas for infrastructure to support zero emission heating
  • identify areas for co-locating developments with a high heat demand, large scale thermal storage opportunities and sources of low and zero emission heat supply
  • identify and protect existing blue and green infrastructure (including access rights and core paths, and areas with an important role in flood water storage or conveyance)
  • identify and protect land with the potential to contribute to managing flood risk
  • identify land that could be used for localised, temporary greening and / or community food production, especially in urban areas
  • identify opportunities for play in the community / neighbourhood

Designate

  • may designate heat network zones
  • identify and designate appropriate areas for infrastructure to support zero emission heating

Enhance

  • enhance and expand natural (green and blue) infrastructure (strategic +local scales)
  • maximise the opportunities for play in the community / neighbourhood

Productive Places

Spatial Strategies: Productive Places

Approach

  • supports a green economic recovery
  • supports the ability of businesses and industry to be flexible to respond to rapid or significant economic change
  • support the sustainable growth of the tourism sector
  • maximises the sustainable and inclusive growth of regional and local visitor economies
  • recognises and supports opportunities for jobs and investment in the creative sector, culture, heritage and the arts
  • seeks to ensure that an area's full potential for electricity and heat from renewable sources is achieved
  • supports the circular economy
  • guides new aquaculture development to locations that reflect industry needs and takes into account wider marine planning. / in accordance with relevant national and regional marine plans and take into account SEPA guidance in its Finfish Aquaculture Sector Plan
  • takes into account current and future improvements to digital connectivity

Identify

  • identify proposals to meet requirements for employment land, infrastructure and investment
  • identify and safeguard sites for any nationally important clusters of industries handling hazardous substances
  • identify appropriate locations for significant business clusters (Enterprise Areas, business parks, science parks, large and medium-sized industrial sites and high amenity sites)
  • identify land for new business and industrial development (range of sites)
  • identify opportunities for sustainable tourism development
  • identify areas viewed as potentially suitable for wind energy development
  • identify appropriate locations for new infrastructure to support the circular economy and meet identified needs
  • identify and safeguard existing waste management sites
  • identify a landbank of permitted reserves for construction aggregates of at least 10 years at all times in relevant market areas through the identification of areas of search (criteria based approach may be taken, particularly where a sufficient landbank already exists or substantial unconstrained deposits are available)
  • identify requirements for additional digital infrastructure

Encourage

  • opportunities for home-working, live-work units, micro-businesses and community hubs
  • additional onshore wind energy development

Distinctive Places

Spatial Strategies: Distinctive Places

Approach

  • supports sustainable futures for city, town and local centres /provides a sustainable network of settlements
  • seeks to provide a proportion of housing land requirements in city and town centres
  • protects and enhances locally, regionally, nationally and internationally valued historic assets and places
  • encourages the re-use and adaptation of existing historic environment assets and places, through active regeneration
  • any changes to the boundary of the green belt should be considered during plan preparation, whether land releases to accommodate planned growth, or to extend, or change the area covered as green belt
  • redirects development pressure to the most appropriate sustainable locations, making effective use of land and supporting regeneration (prioritising the re-use or re-development of brownfield land first, before new development takes place on greenfield sites
  • seeks to re-use vacant and derelict land and redundant buildings as a priority
  • supports the sustainability and growth of rural communities and economies
  • actively promotes sustainable working and living in rural Scotland and the islands (where relevant)
  • seeks to manage rural development in accessible or pressured rural areas, where there is a danger of unsustainable growth in long-distance car-based commuting or suburbanisation of the countryside
  • supports new development in remote rural and island areas, where it can help support community resilience and sustain fragile populations
  • supports a strategic approach to nature - in which wildlife sites, corridors, and stepping stones, landscape features, watercourses, and green and blue spaces come together to form integrated nature networks, supporting ecological connectivity
  • in allocating land for future development, planning authorities should consider opportunities to safeguard and restore biodiversity and natural assets, and to use nature based solutions to support health and wellbeing
  • protects locally, regionally, nationally and internationally valued soils
  • considers how to adapt our coastline to the impacts of climate change

Identify

  • identify network of centres (city centres, town centres, local centres, commercial centres, emerging or new centres)
  • identify opportunities to support new housing in city and town centres
  • identify sites for, or requirements for, retail provision where a need is identified
  • identify all historic environment designations at the appropriate scale together with key issues/historic environment/cultural heritage projects such as Conservation Area Regeneration Schemes (CARS)
  • identify where appropriate, the detailed boundary of any green belt
  • identify how vacant and derelict land, together with existing properties that are not in use, can be used for future development
  • identify where site briefs or design guides can be prioritised and produced to proactively promote the development of vacant and derelict land
  • make provision for housing in rural areas (rural approach to 20 min neighbourhoods)
  • identify suitable sites for at a range of scales for the purposes of rural resettlement (small-scale housing, including crofts and woodland crofts, and other development which supports sustainable economic growth)
  • identify and protect locally, regionally, nationally and internationally valued natural assets, landscapes, species and habitats
  • safeguard land which is highly suitable for particular uses such as food production or flood management
  • identify and protect key ecological features, including priority species and habitats
  • identify existing woodland and potential for its protection, enhancement or expansion to avoid habitat fragmentation and improve ecological connectivity
  • identify areas of largely developed coast that are a major focus of economic or recreational activity; areas subject to significant constraints; and largely unspoiled areas of the coast that are generally unsuitable for development

Enhance

  • identify opportunities or proposals to enhance town centres
  • set out proposals and actions to protect, restore and enhance biodiversity, including through the promotion of wildlife corridors to support improved ecological connectivity, the creation of new, improved or extended habitats, and through other measures to increase and safeguard populations of priority species and habitats
  • identify and set out proposals as to the development of forestry and woodlands

Contact

Email: LDPRegsandGuidance@gov.scot