National Planning Framework 4: Key Agencies Group - position statement

A joint statement from the Key Agencies Group relating to National Planning Framework 4.

The Key Agencies welcome the opportunity to provide feedback on the Position Statement and we note that the themes raised in our response to the Call for Ideas are well reflected. We support the ambition in the statement to support a green recovery, address the climate and biodiversity emergencies, deliver culturally vibrant places and provide for a sustainable and inclusive economy that works for everyone. For this to be successful the delivery mechanisms to implement NPF4 will need to be robust and innovative while supported by collaborative, partnership working.

In our response to the Call for Ideas, we highlighted the role of the Key Agencies in supporting the preparation of NPF4 using a place-based approach and collaborative working to deliver place outcomes. We continue to position ourselves to enable a place-based approach and offer that support as work on NPF4 continues to progress. We are developing a strong evidence base to demonstrate how collaborative approaches across Scotland can enable successful place-making. Elsewhere, we are supporting local authorities with place-based approaches, using the Place Principle, to deliver a green recovery. The Key Agencies recognise the need for accessible, fit-for-purpose, environmental data to provide a robust evidence base and firm footing for planning decisions. As a key source of this data, we are keen to work with the Scottish Government, including through the delivery of the Digital Strategy, to achieve this aspiration.

We believe that the level of ambition set out in the Position Statement will need to be delivered through a strong and clear policy framework supported by a robust spatial strategy that facilitates an infrastructure first approach to achieving the right development in the right place.

The overall vision of the emerging spatial strategy is supported by the Key Agencies, and we recognise that there are some areas where early collaboration across stakeholders will be needed to agree on priority land uses to ensure that significant challenges such as the climate emergency and biodiversity decline are successfully addressed. The Key Agencies can add real value to these dialogues through early engagement.

As always please don’t hesitate to contact me to discuss opportunities to maximize value from the Key Agency Group in supporting the next steps in the preparation of NPF4.

Your sincerely, Katherine Lakeman, Chair – Key Agency Group

On behalf of the Key Agencies Group:

  • Architecture and Design Scotland
  • Historic Environment Scotland
  • NatureScot
  • Scottish Enterprise
  • Scottish Environment Protection Agency
  • Sport Scotland
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