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Thread: Planning Recommendations

  1. #1
    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Default Planning Recommendations

    Kate Barker Review of Land Use Planning Final Report - Recommendations, document of December 2006 is encouraging in many respects, however it falls short in many areas, with a lot of emphasis on cutting red tape rather than encouraging a system that would improve the quality of life of people quickly. Although Kate Barker did point to the inadequate planning system for creating the following situations:

    * Of the world’s 15 most expensive prime commercial property locations, five are in England.

    * London West End occupation costs of £98 per square foot are the most expensive in the world. They are around 40% more than any other city in the world, and double that of Paris, the next most expensive European city.

    * Prime site occupation costs in Manchester and Leeds are around 40 per cent more than mid-town Manhattan.

    Manchester and Leeds 40% more expensive than Manhattan.

    "Central to Ms Barker's approach is a belief that any building project that has little or no impact on others should be given the go-ahead, whether it is a private extension, the restoration of an empty building in a town, or even in some cases the development of low-value farmland within green belt areas."

    This must be great news for self builders. The subsidised countryside may now not be off-limits - only 7.5% of the land in the UK is settled. The UK has the lowest rate of selfbuilt homes in the western world. In other European countries designing and building your own home is the norm.

    The above "any building project that has little or no impact on others should be given the go-ahead". That in theory is the case now. I assume more of a slant to the applicant than before.

    The line "the development of low-value farmland within green belt areas." This must also give hope selfbuilders too.

    "Barker said planning applications should be approved unless there were strong reasons against them,"

    "She called for a review of urban green belt boundaries to allow socially and environmentally friendly developments."

    The above means NIMBYs need a very strong case. All it needs is the laws and the first test case.

    LONDON (Reuters) - The government must rip up the red tape and
    remove uncertainties to accelerate decision making around major
    planning projects if business is to meet the challenges of
    globalisation, a report said on Tuesday.

    Chancellor Gordon Brown tasked Bank of England policymaker Kate
    Barker to carry out a full review of Britain's planning process
    which business says is hurting competitiveness.

    The recommendations in my report provide a comprehensive set of
    measures to ensure we have a planning system that is timely,
    transparent, flexible and responsive enough to meet the challenges
    that lie ahead," she told a news conference.

    Barker's report called for the creation of an Independent Planning
    Commission to have the final say on planning proposals, removing
    that responsibility from ministers in all but exceptional cases.

    Instead, ministers should set clear strategic guidelines covering
    areas of national importance like transport, energy, water and
    waste -- and then step back.

    The report said rooftop wind turbines to cut carbon dioxide
    emissions should not be hindered by planning laws, and planning
    permission should take account of future flooding from climate
    change.

    Barker said planning applications should be approved unless there
    were strong reasons against them, noting that streamlining the
    planning process could save businesses and local authorities
    hundreds of millions of pounds.

    The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors said the planning
    commission had to be insulated from political pressure.

    "A National Spatial Plan ... needs to be put in place by the
    proposed commission, so as to ensure that decisions on major
    infrastructure investment are integrated into the development plan
    process," said Brian Berry, RICS head of public policy.

    "Such a plan would also help to balance national interests with
    local concerns. Without a plan, Barker's review is in danger of
    creating a democratic deficit," he added.

    Barker said a Planning Gain Supplement -- a windfall tax on profits
    from development of greenfield sites -- should come into effect
    after 2008.

    She called for a review of urban green belt boundaries to allow
    socially and environmentally friendly developments.


    ADVERTISING




    More than half of land in Britain is protected from development
    either through green belt bans, nature reserves or as sites of
    special scientific interest.

    Businesses argue that bureaucratic delays in getting planning
    permission for new projects are holding them up from making new
    investments in Britain.

    Pfizer, the world's largest pharmaceuticals group, is said to have
    abandoned a plan to locate its European headquarters in Britain
    because of planning constraints.

    Development of Heathrow Airport's Terminal Five was delayed for
    years by planning objections, and Swedish flatpack furniture giant
    IKEA is struggling to get permission for 20 more stores.

    The Institute of Directors said the report was "one of the most
    sensible things to have come out of the Treasury in years".

    Barker said the town centre first policy for urban developments should remain in place but the requirement to demonstrate the need for a development should be removed.

    Barker called for a cut in form-filling and a streamlining of the process so development plans could be delivered in 18-24 months rather than the more than three years it currently takes.

    If these recommendations become law then house prices will drop, as more land is available, and the quality of life will rise.

    See:
    http://www.saveliverpooldocks.co.uk
    Go to:
    The Land article.
    The new Amsterdam at Liverpool?
    Save Liverpool Docks and Waterways - Click

    Deprived of its unique dockland waters Liverpool
    becomes a Venice without canals, just another city, no
    longer of special interest to anyone, least of all the
    tourist. Would we visit a modernised Venice of filled in
    canals to view its modern museum describing
    how it once was?


    Giving Liverpool a full Metro - CLICK
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    New laws give waterfront heritage zone extra protection Mar6 2007 Liverpool Daily Post


    CULTURE Secretary Tessa Jowell will this week outline plans to make it even harder to get planning permission for projects at world heritage sites, including Liverpool’s waterfront.

    The move follows concerns raised by United Nations inspectors that lax planning rules are putting the sites at risk of damaging development.

    Last year, architecture experts from Unesco – the body that polices world heritage sites – visited Liverpool to inspect plans for three wedge-shaped apartment blocks near the Three Graces.

    Its emergency report squashed rumours that any such development could lead to the city being stripped of its prestigious heritage title.

    A similar row has engulfed the Tower of London, where Unesco raised the alarm over huge skyscrapers. Inspectors will rule in June whether the Tower should be put on an “at risk” list.

    Now a White Paper, to be unveiled by Ms Jowell on Thursday, will make it easier for schemes to be “called in” to public inquiries, which will have stronger powers to block insensitive development.


    But the changes will go much further by stamping out home improvements – such as stone cladding and satellite dishes – which do not currently need planning permission.


    The country's 24 world heritage sites will be given "buffer zones" to ensure the same protection as national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty.


    A Department of Culture spokesman said: “Liverpool was given a clean bill of health by inspectors last year, but it would be disastrous in terms of international public relations if any of our sites were put in the endangered category.


    “One satellite dish might not make much difference, but 200 would have an awful effect, which is why we need more controls on development.”

    However, Liverpool City Council disputed the need for the new laws, pointing out that the area adjacent to the world heritage site already enjoyed protection as a conservation area.

    That meant “permitted developments,” such as stone cladding, were already outlawed, although not across the entire "buffer zone", which stretches up to a quarter of a mile.

    Mr Hinchliffe, the council's world heritage officer, said: "We don't think allowing stone cladding a quarter of a mile away makes much difference, but we will have to see what the White Paper says.”

    Campaigner Wayne Colquhoun, from Liverpool Preservation Trust, said: “We have been pressing for some time for this kind of government intervention. If Tessa Jowell is now saying that even satellite television dishes will not be allowed in buffer zones, how can Liverpool City Council condone huge granite building blocks that will for ever destroy the side view of the Port of Liverpool Building.

    "The same applies to schemes in Princes Dock that will ruin that most evocative view of the Royal Liver Building for ships sailing into port.

    “These projects must now be put on hold to await the report of the Unesco meeting in summer and also to enable a proper study of Tessa Jowell’s White Paper proposals.”

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