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25/09/2014

RTPI launches strategic planning proposals

Words: Laura Edgar
Deal agreed / Shutterstock

The RTPI has published strategic, larger-than-local planning proposals for England that, although drawing on existing arrangements, require stronger incentives for co-operation and making future plans.

Many matters, including planning renewable energy, providing affordable housing and ensuring transport links are sufficient, need co-ordination across a broader area than just the one local authority. The RTPI says this is not happening and it is a serious problem for England. The solution, it says, is strategic planning – planning across the boundaries of local authorities.

The proposals, Strategic Planning: Beyond “Cooperation”, for 2015 explain that local authorities should maintain and form voluntary groupings in geographic areas of city-region or county scale to agree on housing numbers, transports investment, key employment locations and environmental management. The approach to strategic matters should align with Local Enterprise Partnerships’ (LEPs) economic plans.

The RTPI has also said that central government should drive this forward with strong but conditional incentives in transport, health/education spending because it has found that there are often strong reasons for planning authorities in particular not to co-operate. In addition, LEPs are proposed to align economic growth plans with strategic housing provision plans.

The RTPI believes that the proposals it has set out can enhance homes in England, as well employment opportunities.

Trudi Elliott, chief executive of the RTPI, said: “Across many parts of the country and within many parts of society there is a growing recognition that many matters require effective agreement among local authorities if more and better homes and jobs are to be secured in the right places in the future. I commend the proposals to you.”

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