Yorkshire boasts excellent planning and regeneration projects, witnessed RTPI President John Acres during his tour of Rotherham and Sheffield last week.
Sheffield’s “stuck sites” programme
In Sheffield, Mr Acres visited the council’s “stuck sites” programme which involves the council using enforcement powers typically served reactively to negligent building owners in response to complaints, to spur regeneration and develop new housing on eyesore sites and derelict historic buildings.
Speaking of the programme, he said: “Sheffield Council has transformed derelict inner city sites to provide vital new homes for communities through the strategic use of enforcement powers. It demonstrates what planning can achieve through existing powers and planning professionals’ own tenacity and skill.”
Rotherham’s digital revolution in planning
Mr Acres later went to Rotherham to congratulate officers and managers in the local planning team which won the RTPI Local Authority Planning Team of the Year Award this year.
Mr Acres said: “I am delighted to witness first hand Rotherham Council’s modern, efficient and flexible planning service which has achieved a high level of community satisfaction.
“I am impressed by the team’s digital management system which has modernised planning processes. Their approach is enabling development and creating the right conditions for growth and regeneration in the region.”
Colin Blackburn, Assistant Director of Housing, Infrastructure and Planning for Sheffield City Region: said: “It was beneficial for us to hear directly from John about some of the planning issues that other areas are facing at the moment, and to understand what the national priorities are for the RTPI.”
Celebrating Hull’s green vision
Last but not least, Mr Acres gave the keynote speech at the RTPI Yorkshire Planning Excellence Award which awarded Hull City Council for its vision and expertise in delivering Siemen’s new offshore wind turbine blade manufacturing, assembly and servicing facilities at the city’s Alexandra Port.