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Derelict and vacant land proposals published in Scotland

Words: Roger Milne
Vacant land / Shutterstock_18986386

RTPI Scotland has welcomed the recommendations set out in a new report by the country's Vacant and Derelict Land Taskforce.

These aim to transform how Scotland tackles the legacy of derelict land and ensure that land doesn’t fall into long-term disrepair. 

The recommendations, which target ministers, urge better use of data to drive decisions and the alignment of policy and funding to support delivery. The task force also advises on measures to stem the flow of new sites and tackle the legacy. 

A call to resource chief planning officers is also included so that they can coordinate and lead on vacant and derelict land at a local level.

RTPI Scotland director Craig McLaren, a task force member, said: “These recommendations can help stimulate the change we need to tackle the blight of vacant and derelict land. 

“They chime with the RTPI’s Plan the World We Need research and campaign, which has highlighted how governments must capitalise on the expertise of spatial planners to tackle place-based inequality, enable a green industrial revolution, prioritise healthy and sustainable modes of transport and coordinate the rapid deployment of zero-carbon infrastructure.”

He maintained that the public sector should take a more active role in development. “The new National Planning Framework should put derelict sites that have been unused for a long time as a top priority. Fixing up ‘brownfield’ sites, or sites that used to have buildings on them, should be a priority in the next national Infrastructure Investment Plan,” he insisted.

McLaren added: “We are also happy to do our bit in exploring how innovative planning policies that can support the reuse of vacant and derelict land and by helping develop planners’ skills and knowledge on the issues faced.”

Image credit | Shutterstock