Offering an initial response to the Queen’s Speech, TCPA Chief Executive Fiona Howie said:
The planning system will be central to delivering the government’s 12 levelling up missions and creating healthy, sustainable and resilient homes and neighbourhoods. The emphasis in the speech on reforming the planning system to give communities more involvement in shaping their local area is welcome, but if the system is to be able to play a transformational role, then the reforms must include a clear purpose for planning that places an emphasis on improving outcomes for people and the environment. Giving the system a clear, statutory purpose is a vital step in creating a system that can secure people’s health and well-being but also rebuild public trust in local decisions.
The references to net zero, including in relation to an Energy Bill, are also potentially positive. However, new legislation and implementing a reformed planning system will take time. Therefore, leadership by Ministers on climate change to put the issue at the heart of the planning system is essential. This includes the need for an urgent review of the National Planning Policy Framework to deliver the radical action necessary to deal with the climate crisis.
Contact: Isaac.LeQuesne@tcpa.org.uk, +44 20 8132 5455
The Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA): The Town and Country Planning Association works to challenge, inspire and support people to create healthy, sustainable and resilient places where everyone can thrive.