Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Tips writing your response to the Highland-wide Local Development Plan

For those who are about to start your submission to the Development Plan consultation:

  • Remember who you are trying to persuade - really the Reporter not the council
  • Be clear about what changes you want - bear in mind that what you write is required to be summarised by the Planning Authority so be as unequivocal (but polite, of course) as possible
  • Be comprehensive…
  • …but succinct - only 2000 words encouraged (but enclosures can be added as well)
  • Focus on planning, and realistic options
  • Recognise the Reporter’s role
  • Recognise the other parts of the system

Examinations are intended as the principal means of independently testing the issues arising from representations on proposed strategic development plans ( SDPs) and local development plans ( LDPs). Amongst other things they should examine the issues raised in representations rather than responding to each individual representation and ensure the process is understandable and transparent to the public.

The planning Authority has to submit a summary of unresolved issues.

71. The summary of unresolved issues is to group the representations into a smaller number of issues. It is to:

* Number and list all the unresolved representations and name the people making the representations;

* Include a summary of the issues raised in the representations;

* Include the authority's reasons (generally expressed in less than 800 words per issue) for not modifying the plan in regard to each issue; and

* Be arranged, so far as practicable, so that the issues appear in the same order as they are set out in the plan.

A form for the summary is included as schedule 4 to the regulations.

For more information go to Planning Circular 1 2009

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Is transparency to no avail?

Transparency, so I have read, facilitates participation; in a social context it implies openness.

I came across this discussion paper whilst trying to make sense of the decision making processes here in Highland:

'Is transparency to no avail? Committee decision-making, pre-meetings, and credible deals.'*

Lots of formulae but fascinating nonetheless click here

*July 17, 2007. Dept. of Economics, Erasmus University Rotterdam, and Tinbergen Institute.

(The Tinbergen Institute is the institute for economic research of the Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam, Universiteit van Amsterdam, and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.)

Whatever happened to the IABP?

Property agents across UK and world advised of opportunities for freight and warehousing companies

A major marketing drive is under way to attract businesses to the planned Inverness Airport Business Park (IABP), including a push overseas.

Bryce Stewart, director at Colliers, said: “IABP is unique among business parks. It is extremely well connected, sitting beside an airport with well-established links across the UK and in turn abroad, with connectivity to important road links such as the A96 and the A9, and just six miles from the centre of Inverness. And as a city Inverness has great appeal, with a capable workforce and access to such a great lifestyle.

Read more: http://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/Article.aspx/1948253?UserKey=#ixzz11x9uSTe4

A Business Visitors View of the Highlands

Highlands and Islands: Strength in Diversity

It's a summer's day and the Edinburgh to Inverness train is packed with tourists from all over the globe. On arriving at the Highland capital's station I can see the smart new Marks & spencer store nearby which forms part of the city's covered Eastgate shopping Centre. The newly refurbished streets are swarming with people - this is peak time for the region's tourist trade.

More here

Quote of the Week

‘The public interest’ is a phrase much used by a wide variety of organisations but just because the phrase is in common use does not mean that everyone understands it to mean the same thing.

Why bother to take part?

"Environmental issues are best handled with the participation of all concerned citizens, at the relevant level. At the national level, each individual shall have appropriate access to information... and the opportunity to participate in decision making processes. States shall facilitate and encourage public awareness and participation by making information widely available."

United Nations Rio Declaration, Principle 10, 1992


What use participation?

"Community participation lies right at the heart of sustainable development. Sustainable communities will take different forms from place to place, but one thing that none of them will be able to do without is a broad and deep level of participation."

Action Towards Local Sustainability, website introduction, 1999