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Report calls for major changes to planning controls – University of Reading

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Report calls for major changes to planning controls

Release Date 04 May 2006

a craneThree alternatives to the current development control system have been put forward by a major new government-sponsored review. The ODPM has just published a major piece of research that explores a range of alternatives to the current planning system. The authors of the report, Professors Phil Allmendinger and Michael Ball from the University of Reading's Department of Real Estate and Planning, point to the drawbacks in the current system and how housing supply, particularly in the south east of England, is being constrained by an overly bureaucratic and inflexible approach that focuses too much on detail. The authors claim that a range of alternative approaches would speed up development, improve housing supply and provide greater certainty to developers while focusing resources and greater control on areas that require them. The report states: "These substitutes for detailed planning permission could facilitate the control required by local communities while allowing greater freedom to developers to meet market demands more quickly and flexibly." The suggested approaches are: • Co-regulation: Where developers and planners agree a code of practice for a defined location, under which development must take place; • A 'positive planning' approach: Where some land allocated in the development plan is automatically granted planning permission; • Restrictive covenants: Agreed between the land or property owner, which would limit what can subsequently be developed on a site. One of the report's authors, Professor Philip Allmendinger, said: "House extensions and major new housing estates in principle are subject to the same regulations and follow the same process. With increasing pressures on local authorities to make quicker, better decisions it makes no sense to have a 'one size fits all' system. "A range of alternative approaches would allow planners to focus their attention on those areas that need detailed control such as those that include conservation area and listed buildings." The suggested alternatives are aimed at new development where major house building is planned. End Notes for editors 1. The Department of Real Estate & Planning at the University of Reading is the largest department in the country for teaching and research in real estate. The Department carries out both pure and applied research, and this reflects the strong links between the Department's research and the needs of the private and public sectors and the professions. Departmental staff include real estate economists, management scientists, strategic and local planners, surveyors, financial analysts and rural specialists. These staff play a full part in the research activities of the UK professional institutions involved with land, property and planning, including the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, the Royal Town Planning Institute and the Investment Property Forum. 2. Copies of the full report 'Rethinking the planning regulation of land and property markets' and executive summary are available from the ODPM website: Media contacts: Philip Allmendinger, Professor of Planning Tel: 0118 378 8173 Mob: 07904 121 982 Email: Craig Hillsley, Press Officer Tel: 0118 378 7388 Mob: 07834 006 243 Email:

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