The public sector and planning policy: the consultants' view

As part of the Planning Consultancy Survey 2018, we asked respondents for their views on various questions related to the outlook for the planning consultancy market, public sector performance, the impact of national policy and their aspirations for future policy changes. Their answers are listed below:

Green belt: majority of consultants say policy imposes undue constraints on development
Green belt: majority of consultants say policy imposes undue constraints on development

OUTLOOK FOR DEVELOPMENT AND PLANNING CONSULTANCY

Q The economic climate for development will improve over the next 12 months

Agree 55%

Unsure 13%

Disagree 31%


Q Your planning consultancy team will grow within the next 12 months

Agree 60%

Unsure 18%

Disagree 22%


Q Your planning consultancy team will contract within the next 12 months

Agree 5%

Unsure 8%

Disagree 87%

PUBLIC SECTOR PERFORMANCE

Q A lack of resources for local authority planning departments is a major constraint on local plan production and timely decisions on applications

Agree 91%

Unsure 4%

Disagree 5%

Q By and large, local authority plan-making performance is satisfactory

Agree 16%

Unsure 14%

Disagree 70%

Q By and large, local authority development management performance is satisfactory

Agree 23%

Unsure 17%

Disagree 60%

Q By and large, allowing LPAs to increase their application fees has helped to improve the performance of their planning services

Agree 12%

Unsure 26%

Disagree 63%


Q Paid-for Planning Performance Agreements are usually good value for money

Agree 27%

Unsure 40%

Disagree 33%

Q Paid-for pre-application discussions are usually good value for money

Agree 33%

Unsure 24%

Disagree 43%

Q By and large, Planning Inspectorate decision-making performance is satisfactory

Agree 23%

Unsure 16%

Disagree 61%


IMPACT OF NATIONAL POLICY

Q The benefits of permitted development rights extensions in England since 2012 have generally outweighed any harm they might have caused

Agree 49%

Unsure 29%

Disagree 21%


Q Neighbourhood planning has increased residents' ability to resist development

Agree 62%

Unsure 21%

Disagree 18%


Q The introduction of permission in principle for sites allocated in brownfield registers and for developments of schemes of ten homes or less will help increase the provision of good quality new housing

Agree 18%

Unsure 43%

Disagree 39%

Q The new NPPF's policies on viability should help councils secure higher levels of affordable housing

Agree 28%

Unsure 49%

Disagree 23%

Q The introduction of the standard method of calculating housing need will speed up local plan-making

Agree 37%

Unsure 40%

Disagree 23%

Q The introduction of the Housing Delivery Test will help boost housing delivery

Agree 28%

Unsure 49%

Disagree 23%

ASPIRATIONS FOR NATIONAL POLICY

Q Green belt policy imposes undue constraints on development and should be reviewed

Agree 74%

Unsure 10%

Disagree 16%

Q The government should implement its manifesto pledge to capture more of the land value increases created by housebuilding to reinvest in local infrastructure, services and further housing

Agree 45%

Unsure 21%

Disagree 34%

Q Charging appellants fees for planning inquiries would be acceptable in return for a definite decision timetable, as long as they were appropriate to the size of the development and refunded if the appeal were to be successful

Agree 43%

Unsure 2%

Disagree 35%

Q Requiring housebuilders to share large sites with rivals would accelerate build- out of planning permissions

Agree 25%

Unsure 29%

Disagree 47%


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