4.0Spatial planning has proved to be a valuable tool for economies across Europe and the World
The UK is the 5th largest economy in the world and one of the most densely populated. It is facing the prospect of a growing population with an additional 3.6m people over the next 10 years. As a result, it faces the challenges and opportunities of accomodating signification urban growth and renewal.
These pressures require careful planning and management if the benefits of new investments are to be harnessed and sustainable.
The planning system therefore needs to develop in order to: contribute to the well-being and quality of life of existing communities secures the quality of the environment for future generations; doesn’t overload our transport and other vital infrastructure; and creates confidence that valuable investment will be supported.
Please click on the links below to see the draft plans already prepared by The One Powerhouse Consortium and our partners Aecom, Atkins and Barton Willmore. These are drafts.
At a local level, the town and country planning system delivers these benefits by setting out a longer term vision (normally 15-20 years). This is done through the preparation of thorough local plans for all communities by the local planning authority (e.g. a District or Metropolitan Council or London Borough). These plans are based on wide ranging consultation and approved after an independent examination. There is a presumption in favour of new development which accords with these plans.
In addition, account is taken of the fact that the planning of new housing or transport needs to be done over larger area than most local councils. Therefore, a key plank of the planning system is a duty to cooperate between local planning authorities. This is important where local council boundaries are arbitrary.
Councils can cooperate through a range of mechanisms. Increasingly, this is being done through the preparation of joint plans, especially where there are elected mayors of Combined authorities (e.g. Greater Manchester).
Over the past three decades there have been various initiatives to create regional planning arrangements in England. These have included Regional Planning Guidance produced by the government (1986) later replaced by locally produced Regional Spatial Strategies, which were abolished in 2010.
Our proposal is to develop large-scale regional plans which are NOT statutory in nature but instead provide an over-arching vision and framework within which local statutory planning can take place.
This approach to regional spatial planning of major infrastructure, promoting economic regeneration and development and securing the future of the environment requires effort, but has been very successful in other countries.
Notably in Germany with the Rhine/Ruhr, in The Netherlands with the Randstad and in The New York Metropolitan area through the Regional Plan Association.
These regions have been extraordinarily successful in connecting their key cities, promoting economic growth and employment, while still managing the vital issues of quality of life and the environment.