A new national planning policy has been published by the Housing Secretary and has outlined the Government’s vision for new homes throughout the UK.
This revised national policy has a focus on giving communities the opportunity to have their say when it comes to developments in their area and hopes to set new standards for both quality and design.
Put into place earlier this year by the Prime Minister, this new framework aims to provide a full and clear set of guidelines that would help build new quality homes more efficiently.
There are a few key points that these new rules focus on, such as promoting high-quality design, stronger protection for the environment, building the right number of homes in the right places and greater responsibility and accountability for housing delivery from councils and developers.
Secretary of State for Housing – James Brokenshire – stated “Fundamental to building the homes our country needs is ensuring that our planning system is fit for the future. This revised planning framework sets out our vision of a planning system that delivers the homes we need.
“I am clear that quantity must never compromise the quality of what is built, and this is reflected in the new rules. We have listened to the tens of thousands of people who told us their views, making this a shared strategy for development in England”
Moving forward, local councils will be granted the tools to refuse permission on any new developments that they feel does not compliment the surrounding area or prioritise design quality.
In addition to this, communities will now have access to information on potential developments and design plans so that they can have their own input on the changes to their area, but also ensuring the new homes improve the area.
The new policy also has considerations for the environment, with strict rules in place to make sure that new buildings do not restrict any nearby wildlife and instead give it the opportunity to grow. This is in keeping with Defra’s 25 Year Environment Plan, which looks prioritise both air quality and protecting natural habitats.
While there is, of course, a focus on providing more homes throughout the country, the government wants to use this new policy to ensure homes are built in the right places, to help improve the housing market’s current affordability issues.
Also included in this new initiative will be the Housing Delivery Tests which will be available from November 2018 and focus on helping councils increase the number of homes that are actually delivered and not just how many homes are planned for development.