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RTPI Northern Ireland to provide Secretariat for new Interim Planning Commission

The RTPI Northern Ireland (RTPI NI) will provide the Secretariat for the interim Regional Planning Commission, which met for the first time today, 24 February 2023. 

The Commission, recommended by the previous NI Assembly Public Accounts Committee, has been formed on an interim basis to advise and provide support to the important work being taken forward by central and local government to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the planning system. 

“A well-functioning planning system is essential for all of our communities,” said Roisin Willmott, Director for the RTPI Northern Ireland. “RTPI NI welcomes the opportunity to support the important work the Commission will be undertaking to identifying solutions to improving the planning system in Northern Ireland.”

The membership of the interim Commission, which is being set up on an interim basis, reflects key stakeholder interests across the economic, community and environment sectors, along with senior representatives of central and local government. A second representative from the environmental sector shall sit on this Board and will be confirmed before the next meeting. The Department for Infrastructure and Solace are also represented. 

The interim Commission will be independently chaired by Rosemary Thomas, former Chief Planner for Wales. “I relish this opportunity as chair of the Interim Commission, to contribute to the improvement of the planning system in NI,” said Thomas. “I am confident that the skills and experience which I gained in Wales will prove useful, as many of the challenges facing planning across the British Isles are very similar.”

The support of the interim Commission will be invaluable in progressing the changes needed to ensure that we have a planning system which supports sustainable development and delivers for everyone.

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