Local Living and 20 Minute Neighbourhood - draft planning guidance: consultation analysis

We consulted on the Local Living and 20 Minute Neighbourhood: draft planning guidance between 27 April and 20 July 2023. The 10 consultation questions aimed to gather a broad range of public and stakeholder views on each element of the guidance.

10. Conclusions

Many individuals and stakeholders with detailed knowledge took part in the consultation, sharing their views on the Draft Planning Guidance which will be used to assist the delivery of local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods in Scotland. Reflecting their experience and perspectives, this report provides a high-level summary of the consultation responses. For more detail, readers are encouraged to look to individual responses where permission was given for publication[7].

Organisations viewed the draft guidance positively, almost always rating it as somewhat or very helpful. The draft was seen as providing a useful overview of local living, and respondents welcomed the recognition that flexibility is required when applying the concepts and the focus on community engagement and collaboration. Positive feedback was received on each part of the proposed structured approach to applying the guidance.

However, both organisations and individuals frequently called for more information, detail or examples to expand the guidance and to help it be used in practice. For example, requests were made for more information on how to engage and empower communities, and to collect and use data. More specifically, organisations often noted concerns around the potential cost and resource implications of following the structured approach and ensuring the concepts are implemented effectively.

Mixed views were expressed on the Local Living Framework; many viewed it positively, but others felt it was unclear, or offered suggestions for how it could be structured differently or other categories or key considerations which could be included. Similarly, while many described the case studies as comprehensive and wide-ranging, others suggested improvements such as ensuring they follow a more uniform structure and include a ‘lessons learned’ section.

There were also calls for the guidance to allow further flexibility when applying the concepts in rural and semi-rural areas, for greater recognition of the infrastructure which is required for local living, and for greater alignment with and reference to other policies and policy areas. While some welcomed the inclusion of the updated Equalities Impact Assessment, some highlighted the need to ensure that those with protected characteristics are included in decision-making and not adversely impacted by introducing local living.

While individuals typically expressed negative views about local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods, their comments often stemmed from a misunderstanding of the aims of the policy, leading some organisations to call for the guidance to do more to address these misconceptions.

Overall, the key message was that there is support for the draft guidance among stakeholders and likely users of the document, with a desire to see a future version which includes more detail and examples. The findings from this analysis will be used by the Scottish Government to revise and finalise the guidance.


Email: Chief.Planner@gov.scot

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