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RTPI dismay as Scottish review panel lacks planner

Words: Roger Milne
Crawford Beveridge

The Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Scotland has expressed disappointment that the independent panel announced this week by the Scottish Government to review the planning system does not include a chartered planner.

Pam Ewen, RTPI Scotland Convener, said: “While the members of the panel bring a lot of expertise, I am astonished and very disappointed that there is not a planner on the panel with recent practical experience of the planning system.

“The success of the review will depend upon knowledge and expertise of how the planning system works from the inside as well as the outside.”

The RTPI has written to planning minister Alex Neill requesting that a chartered planner plays a role in an advisory capacity.

The institute’s concern came after Neill announced an independent panel to conduct what was described as a “game-changing” review of Scotland’s planning system.

Its role is to bring together ideas for “a quicker, more accessible and efficient” planning process.

The three-person panel includes representatives of Planning Aid Scotland and the Scottish Property Federation.

It will examine issues such as development planning, housing delivery, infrastructure development, resourcing and community engagement.

It will be led by Crawford Beveridge, who chairs the Scottish government's Council of Economic Advisers. The panel is due to report back in spring 2016.

Details of the review can be found here.

Image courtesy of Silveiro Neto