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Shake-up of telecommunication infrastructure permitted development mooted in Scotland

Words: Roger Milne

The Scottish Government has begun talks about expanding certain existing permitted development rights for Electronic Communications Code Operators (ECCOs).

The consultation also considers the introduction of new permitted development rights for the construction or installation of new ground based masts for ECCOs, subject to a prior approval procedure.

Proposed changes to planning legislation on electronic communications infrastructure (e.g. masts, cabinets and antennas) is involved.

These proposals form part of the Scottish Government’s response to recommendations made in recently published independent research and set out in the Mobile Action Plan published on 12 June.

Following the independent review of planning, a separate - but related - work stream is being progressed in tandem with this consultation, which will look at extending permitted development rights more generally.

Also set out in the Mobile Action plan is the administration’s commitment to develop a new telecommunications advice note to replace the current note on radio communications – this would sit alongside any new legislation.

It will set out the expectations for the different parties’ roles within the development management process, as well as agreed best practice for the siting and design of electronic communications Infrastructure.

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