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Planning overhaul to speed up housebuilding

Major plans to revamp Scotland’s planning system have been proposed by the Scottish government to help speed up housebuilding. 

The proposals are designed to simplify the planning process for developers seeking to build much needed new homes north of the border.

Aside from cut red tape for housebuilders, the revamp would also offer local people a greater say in planning issues in their area.


A consultation on the plans will run until 4 April, with a planning bill expected to be brought forward towards the tail of this year.

The planning system should help to improve people’s lives by “making better places and supporting the delivery of good quality homes”, according to the consultation document.

Key changes include zoning more land for housing, promoting self-build and removing the need to apply for planning permission for more types of development.

The consultation will also seek opinions on new rights for communities to produce their own plans for their local area.

Ultimately, the proposals put forward will “support economic growth, delivery of houses and increase community involvement in planning decisions”, according to the Scottish government.

Planning minister Kevin Stewart commented: “Planning affects everyone’s lives, from making sure we have the right types of homes to driving forward regeneration.

“We need a strong and efficient system to support these aims and for long-term economic growth. I believe these proposals will mean we are better placed to make high-quality development happen sooner and in the right places.” 


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