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RTPI Scotland responds positively to publication of draft SPP and NPF3

30 April 2013

RTPI Scotland, representing professional planners is in Scotland, welcomed the Scottish Government’s publication of the draft Scottish Planning Policy (SPP) and the National Planning Framework 3 (NPF3).

Alistair MacDonald RTPI Convenor 2013RTPI Scotland has been clear that both the NPF and SPP need to be ambitious and provide the context for making often difficult decisions on where we should be promoting growth and what should be protected. The Institute is therefore pleased that Scottish Government has used the NPF3 Main Issues Report to establish a clearer spatial strategy for renewables developments.

Alistair MacDonald, RTPI Scotland’s Convenor (pictured right), said: “We welcome the publication of these documents. They show the Government's continued commitment to using the planning system to achieve its ambitions for Scotland. The documents should influence Government policy on what goes where and decisions on investment from Government, its agencies, utility companies and developers.

We are pleased to see the emphasis given to creating great places in the Main Issues Report for NPF3 and the draft revised Scottish Planning Policy.  Embedding these key principles into national policy documents should go some way to ensure that we help to deliver quality places for people.

The consultations provide an opportunity to discuss and debate the future shape of Scotland - where we should invest, promote growth and provide infrastructure, and, what we should protect from development to protect the environment and communities. We will be encouraging our Members to engage in this debate.”

RTPI Scotland also noted the key role that planners and planning can play in meeting the Government’s ambitions around a low carbon economy and town centre first policies.

The documents recognise the important role that planning can play in achieving sustainable economic growth and helping to support the transition to a low carbon economy.  The planning system can help to link these with other priorities outlined in the draft SPP including sustainable development, community engagement, climate change and placemaking. 

The proposed ‘town centres first’ approach contained in the draft SPP which advocates for the first time at national level these being the primary location for cultural and community facilities, retail leisure, entertainment, recreation, homes and business. The document outlines the role that planners can play in supporting this.