These Endless Refusals on Sites Allocated in Development Plans Shows there is no Logical Case Against Zoning

Hardly a day goes by these days without another decision overturned on appeal against a refusal of a site in a local authorities development plan.

There is only one distinction in law between a planning system based on discretion and one based on zoning. That is in a zoning system the zoning system gives consent as of right to one or more levels of detail of the schemes design. They dont prevent consultation or discretion, they simply give some finality to proceedings, finality concluded when all consents and permits are granted. Frequently a zoning plan only gives consent to a sites land use, quantum of development and some limited parameters. Other matters are subject to consultation and/or design control. Where form based codes (design codes in English parlence) are in place they can often drill down another level, permitting the gneral layout and form. For these parameters not in the zoning code discretion is required, as it it for most sites in most rural areas which few zoning codes in the world cover.

The only real objection to stopping zoning is to give the right to object and frustrate on matters to which the public will has already decided and made a democratic decision on. This is a right to frustrate a right to stop an enablement of the right to be a NIMBY on battles already lost and to go against the democratic will of the majority to promote the interests of an awkward squad of an enabled minority.

Lets be honest the majority of objectors to zoning are of this enabled antidemocratic minority. If you want to object to the form of a zoning system, its nuances and legal mechanisms, its structure and best practice, then do so, but hardly any of the discussions on zoning are of this form.

2 thoughts on “These Endless Refusals on Sites Allocated in Development Plans Shows there is no Logical Case Against Zoning

  1. Is the analysis of these refusals that these committees are actually refusing even the principle of development? Not just some aspect that has been proposed by the applicant?
    The issue that our committee is keen to challenge by refusal, is the viability argument being used to reduce the affordable housing provision originally agreed at outline. This even when we use our own viability expert to analysis the applicant’s justification.
    The last application saw 15 affordables reduced to 3 – the applicant proposed 2! The committee wanted to refuse this as far too low . It was only approved on the chairman’s casting vote.

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