Local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods - planning guidance: consultation

We are seeking views on this draft guidance on local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods to support the implementation of National Planning Framework 4 (NPF4).


The fourth National Planning Framework (NPF4) sets out a clear commitment to think differently about our places, putting climate and nature at the forefront, tackling long standing challenges and inequalities, and leading the transition to stronger, greener, fairer and healthier communities across Scotland.

A key element of this agenda is the need to plan, design and deliver places that support local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods, where people can meet the majority of their daily needs within a reasonable distance of their home.

Local living can support our health and wellbeing, tackle inequality, increase climate resilience and deliver vibrant local economies. Providing better access to more of the services and facilities that people need on a daily basis can reduce the need to travel unsustainably, increase opportunities for social connections and help to build a positive sense of belonging and community resilience.

Delivering local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods requires an understanding of the specific context of a place. Whatever the context - cities, town, village, rural and island communities - the views and interests of local people must be at the forefront of the decisions made about a place. Local living and the 20 minute neighbourhood concept should respond to the assets, opportunities and needs of a place. It is a flexible approach rather than a template and does not restrict movement or impose boundaries, but rather is a way of supporting communities to have more of their daily needs met locally, enabling healthy and sustainable lifestyles.

This document provides further detail to support the NPF4 policy framework on Local Living and 20 minute neighbourhoods. It aims to encourage, promote and facilitate the application of the Place Principle and create connected and compact neighbourhoods which prioritise environmental, social and economic sustainability.

The guidance is intended to assist and support planning authorities, communities and others with an interest in local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods. It is expected to be of particular relevance in the preparation of Local Development Plans (LDPs), Local Place Plans (LPPs) and to support planning decision making. Planning authorities are expected to consider how the guidance can be applied in a proportionate and place-based way and to use their discretion in deciding which components of the advice are relevant to their processes.

This guidance sets out:

  • The benefits and context for local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods
  • What local living looks like - the key considerations of local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods
  • Ways to support the delivery of local living and 20 minute neighbourhoods, including case studies


Email: localliving&20mn@gov.scot

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