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Review of freight sector representation in planning guidance to go ahead

Words: Laura Edgar
Lorry park / iStock-1168030471

Transport secretary Grant Shapps has said that the government will review how the freight sector is represented in planning guidance. 

The Department for Transport (DfT) is “accelerating work” recommended by the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) to consider the appropriateness of current planning practice guidance.

In a written statement, he updated the House of Commons on the initiative between the DfT and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) on planning reforms for lorry parking. 

He emphasised the government’s commitment to addressing the national need for more lorry parking and better services in lorry parks in England. 

The government is working with its partners to identify and deliver a number of temporary sites for the installation of short-term modular facilities to address immediate need. It said it has asked National Highways (formerly Highways England) to consider how its land holdings can be used to provide additional parking spaces across England for priority lorry parking, as well as assist local authorities to identify areas of lorry parking needs. 

Shapps pointed out that the planning system should play a part in meeting the needs of hauliers. “Planning plays a critical part in the allocation of land for lorry parking,” he said.

He highlighted that the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) sets out that local planning policies and decisions should provide adequate overnight lorry parking facilities and take into account local needs. 

“Proposals for new or expanded distribution centres should make provision for sufficient lorry parking to cater for their anticipated use,” Shapps continued. When preparing local plans and deciding planning applications, authorities should address the specific locational requirements of different industrial sectors. 

“The need for a reliable and efficient supply chain has recently come into sharp focus. It is therefore essential that we put in place mechanisms that deliver a supply chain network that is secure, reliable, efficient, and resilient, with no link in the chain overlooked,” added Shapps.

Read the written statement here on the UK Government website.

Image credit | iStock