Scots planning and enterprise areas

A new report sets out key ways that planning can help these areas succeed, says Craig McLaren.

The Scottish government sees enterprise areas as a way to achieve sustainable economic growth. Given this, RTPI Scotland has published a report setting out seven ways that planning can help ensure their success. These are:

1. Invest in upfront masterplanning and development frameworks setting out codes and regimes that establish what design, layout and phasing can and cannot be used.

2. Link the certainty provided through the masterplan and design codes with a fast-tracked approach to processing planning applications.

3. Link planning of the enterprise areas to resources, innovative financing approaches and incentives.

4. Build on the Scottish government's role in brokering solutions to planning and development issues and providing advice to support quality and speedy development in enterprise areas.

5. Use planning to link opportunity and need and ensure communities close to enterprise areas benefit from investment made.

6. Use strategic and local development plans to identify specific locations for enterprise areas and the links required to them.

7. In the medium to long term, identify the broad locations of new enterprise areas in the National Planning Framework so as to link them with national priorities.

David Suttie, RTPI Scotland's convener, said: "Our seven suggestions put good planning at the heart of enterprise areas. This can provide investors, developers, businesses and communities with what they want: confidence about what will be developed in an area, more sustainable and lasting benefits and decisions being made transparently and quickly."

Craig McLaren is national director for RTPI Scotland. To view the report, visit

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