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News & Blog

Planning adapts to aid Edinburgh’s recovery

Posted: 28th April 2020

We’ve been busy establishing new ways of working and adapting our Planning Service as the coronavirus pandemic continues, to support communities and businesses through this difficult time. This includes making sure that citizens can still comment on planning applications and making and issuing decisions which will both help with a swift recovery and a positive future for the city.

The Development Management Sub Committee will start to meet again virtually to consider significant planning applications with the same membership and regularity, and the first Committee to convene since lockdown began, is planned for 20 May.

Work on planning applications has been continuing with all of our planning team working from home and over 360 applications have been decided since lockdown began. Building Warrant applications are also being progressed and over 320 building warrants have been granted during the same period.

Cllr Neil Gardiner, Planning Convener, said:

I would like to reassure citizens and the business community that our planning and building standards service is rising to the challenges that physical distancing due to the ongoing pandemic presents.

Since lockdown started the council has continued to progress hundreds of planning and building warrant applications. I’m also delighted that we have the green light to reconvene the Development Management Sub Committee electronically next month as elected member oversight is an important part of the planning process.

I’m reassured that the public can still comment on applications and that we will issue decisions on applications to everyone as soon as we possibly can. It’s important that when we come out of lockdown the construction industry is not held up and can hit the ground running with the right planning and building warrant approvals in place.

There’s also still almost a week left to comment on ‘Choices for City Plan 2030’, as the council extended the period of acceptance for comments to 30 April. The actual plan when developed will shape future development in the city and so if you haven’t already done so I would encourage you to comment on it.

In response to the pandemic and following government guidance and legislation we’ve introduced new ways for people to stay informed and comment on planning proposals despite the lockdown.

These include:

• Starting our publication of applications that we have received since the lockdown commenced in March. Site notices will be published online, and adverts will be published in the press.
• Issuing neighbour notification letters by post, with the planning portal open for comments to be made on applications.
• The weekly list will publicise all applications received, decisions made, and site notices published.
• Due to the closure of our offices we are still unable to receive any paper letters of representation or paper applications. Online representations and applications are being accepted/validated and, where appropriate, delegated decisions are being issued.

Background

Further information on existing and new applications.

You can also still comment on our two major plans for the future of Edinburgh, Choices for City Plan 2030 and the draft City Mobility Plan, until 30 April.

For those who want to keep up-to-date with planning matters you can subscribe to our Blog to get email updates as soon as they are posted.

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Business Comment is the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce’s bi-monthly magazine. It provides insight on Edinburgh’s vibrant business community, with features on the city’s key sectors, interviews with leading figures and news on new business developments in the capital.
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