Is there no hope for us? Even the one man who should be above going off half cocked on all things planning – unlike certain ministers – has yet again allowed his name to be put to a piece of headline grabbing psuedo-localism. This time in the form of another letter to all local planning authorities.
The letter said: “…the Government is changing some of the text in Planning Policy Guidance 13: Transport (PPG13) to better reflect localism. The Government’s position on parking standards is that local authorities are best placed to take account of local circumstances and are able to make the right decisions for the benefit of their communities. As such, the central requirement to express ‘maximum’ parking standards for new residential development has been deleted.”
Parking standards will still need to be set, but it will be for local authorities to determine what that standard should be.
Wrong! As pointed out by a planning professional in a recent email, what the chief planner has said, especially the bits in bold, are just empty words, when it comes to any form of localism on this issue, because he has ‘conveniently’ forgotten to delete another bit of PPG13 that says:
50. In developing and implementing policies on parking, local authorities should:
2. not require developers to provide more spaces than they themselves wish, other than in exceptional circumstances………’
So, having rushed to my copy of the Local Plan and scrawled out all references to a maximum parking standards in residential development, in order to reduce the amount of pavement parking and front gardens being lost to parking places, I find that the developer is still able, with the blessing of government, to tell me to get stuffed! Another victory for the localism agenda.