Will it ever be possible for the planning system to please all of the people all of the time? Of course not, change always brings resistance and when that changes involves, knocking down, build-up or increasing the presence of something, whether it be houses, people, cars or even cows, as in the case of a recent application for a super dairy near Lincoln, you will always get somebody who doesn’t like it.
However, you would like to think that you could at least improve the system to the point where it met some of the aspirations of both the public and the profession, for better outcomes based on a more straightforward process. Not so it would appear, if the repsonse of the RTPI to the recent Budget is anything to go by.
Budget: Britain’s planners fear a ‘tin shed’ England within 10 years
Changes to planning system announced today will have dramatic effect on character of the country
Richard Summers, President of the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI), which represents almost 23,000 of Britain’s planning professionals, has attacked proposals in the budget announced today to allow developers to bypass important planning rules. Richard Summers said:
“If sweeping changes announced to the planning system result in the default position being ‘yes’ to development then there is real danger that within a decade we will end up with an England of tin sheds, Lego land housing and US style shopping malls”.
“Where will the incentive be in the future for developers to address issues such as climate change, environmental protection, design quality and affordable housing, if they know that the government has tied the hands of local councillors who will be required to nod through most development proposals. This could mean developers building what they like, where they like, and when they like. It’s a policy that finally buries genuine localism”. (my emphasis).