Boris Johnson's 'Once in a Generation' Planning Shake-Up

However, there would be some constraints to development design outlined in the “fast-track for beauty” for popular and replicable forms which reflect local character and preferences.

These development applications would be approved to enable a “gentle intensification” of towns and cities while relieving pressure on planning authorities.

Housing secretary Robert Jenrick said planning decisions will be simple and transparent, with local democracy at the heart of the process.

“Our complex planning system has been a barrier to building the homes people need; it takes seven years to agree local housing plans and five years just to get a spade in the ground.

“As we face the economic effects of the pandemic, now is the time for decisive action and a clear plan for jobs and growth,” Jenrick said.

“Our reforms will create thousands of jobs, lessen the dominance of big builders in the system.”

London Stock Exchange-listed residential developer Gleeson Homes chief executive officer James Thomson also welcomed the changes.

“We strongly support the reform of our historic planning system, to bring it up to speed and ensure it is fit for purpose for the modern day.

“In particular, we welcome initiatives to make it more transparent, speed up planning where appropriate and has a presumption towards development rather than against,” Thomson said.

“Not only will these reforms go some way to supporting local SME housebuilders and their supply chains, but they will also help to ‘level-up’ the country through increased infrastructure investment, bringing jobs and homes to the north.”

Section 106 agreements and the community infrastructure levy will also be replaced with a new infrastructure levy that will be a fixed proportion of the value of the development, above a set threshold.

The paper will now be formally discussed before the government brings forward legislation and policy changes to implement the reforms.

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