Coalition of national organisations warn government that planning reforms do not go far enough

A coalition of national organisations have called on the Housing Secretary to strengthen planning reforms to ensure that local areas have the infrastructure to unlock new housing and to support sustainable development.

The Association of County Chief Executives (ACCE), County Councils Network (CCN) the Home Builders Federation (HBF), the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA), the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT), and the Association of Directors of Environment, Economy, Planning, and Transport (ADEPT), have written to Sajid Javid to say that his government’s proposed Statement of Common Ground (SoCG) is a ‘real opportunity’ to ensure that infrastructure matches housing development in England’s 27 shire counties, to foster job creation and growth.

Read the full letter Joint letter on Statement of Common Ground 28.02.18.

It comes as the Prime Minister is to announce a set of new housebuilding reforms today (Monday, March 5) under the National Planning Policy Framework.

However, the coalition of organisations argue that another proposed government reform, the draft SoCG is a ‘toothless instrument’ in its current guise and must be strengthened to include a more prominent and formalised role for the county council. This could, in effect, re-write strategic planning back into the system after these type of larger-scale planning strategies were abolished under the Coalition, instead placing much looser requirements for councils to collaborate over planning and infrastructure.