Design now has an even stronger role to play in the planning system, both in terms of plan making and decision taking. While the Government has announced a strategic review of guidance documents, there is a wealth of expertise and evidence on how best to achieve good quality design outcomes which are still relevant today.
Design Council Cabe has commissioned a short ‘wayfinding’ document to help planners and others make the case for good design. This document is supported by the Planning Officers Society, RTPI, RIBA, and Landscape Institute.
The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), published in late March, makes it unambiguously clear that achieving design quality is an important part of good planning. The NPPF is deliberately short and has swept away other policy guidance, particularly PPS1, on design that has informed and influenced development plans and decisions on applications.
In future planning authorities, applicants (and their advisers) and local communities will be expected to take responsibility for securing good design, and for taking the opportunities available to improve an area. The Design Wayfinder provides help for authorities, developers and communities. It identifies the main sources of guidance and best practice on good design, on robust local plan policies on design, and the type of analysis required to decide whether proposed development is acceptable.