Planning

This page highlights some of the current parliamentary material available on planning. This includes select committee reports, briefing papers on current legislation and other subjects produced by the parliamentary research services, and the latest Early Day Motions put down by MPs.

Commons Briefing Papers

DateDescription
20.01.2016Comparison of the planning systems in the four UK countries: 2016 update
The differences between the way that planning legislation and policy operate in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland has changed rapidly over recent years. Find out what's changed recently and on forthcoming changes in a January 2016 updated version of this paper.
15.01.2016Shale gas and fracking
The regulatory regime for fracking in the UK is covered in this note along with comment on environmental concerns. It also covers the new access provisions and debate on fracking in during the Infrastructure Bill's passage through Parliament.
14.01.2016The Energy Bill 2015-16: Background and changes in the Lords
The Energy Bill 2015-16 has been debated and Amended in the House of Lords. This paper provides a summary of those changes along with relevant background information for its debate in the House of Commons.
12.01.2016Enterprise Zones
The Government has announced the location of 44 Enterprise Zones in England. Businesses in these small areas will benefit from tax and planning concessions and superfast broadband.
05.01.2016Green Belt
Government's policy on the green belt protection is set out in the National Planning Policy Framework and associated guidance. This note sets out further information on thes size of the green belt alongside recent and proposed policy changes in England.
04.01.2016Gypsies and travellers: planning provisions
Gypsies and travellers have thier own specific section of Government planning policy. The Government has made a number of changes to this designed to strengthen enforcement powers, to change the definition of a traveller for planning purposes, and to give greater protection to green belt areas. This note sets out these issues in more detail.
29.12.2015Housing and Planning Bill: Report on Committee Stage
This House of Commons Library Briefing Paper provides information on the Housing and Planning Bill's progress in Public Bill Committee. The paper summarises Government amendments to the Bill and discussion on the Opposition's attempts to amend the Bill.
21.12.2015Assets of community value
This note briefly discusses the 'community right to bid' for 'assets of community value', introduced by the Localism Act 2011. Councils must maintain a list of 'community assets', nominated by community groups. If the asset is sold, the group will be given time to come up with a bid. The note discusses the workings of the scheme and related options with regard to community land and buildings.
16.12.2015Solar farms: funding, planning and impacts
This Commons Library Briefing paper sets out recent policy updates and issues related to funding, the planning process and agricultural issues for solar farm developments.
30.11.2015Planning Reform Proposals
Reforms aimed at making the planning system quicker and simpler to use are high on the Government's agenda, as set out in the 2015 Productivity Plan. Provisions in the Housing and Planning Bill make changes to the planning system with the aim of getting more houses built. This paper sets out the Government's key planning reform proposals and those changes in the process of being made.

Lords Library Notes

DateDescription
22.01.2016Housing and Planning Bill 2015-16: Briefing for Lords Stages
This Lords Library briefing provides information in support of the House of Lords consideration of the Housing and Planning Bill.
17.07.2015Energy Bill [HL] (HL Bill 56 of 2015-16)
This Library Note provides background reading in advance of the second reading of the Energy Bill [HL] in the House of Lords, on 22 July 2015.
13.06.2014Infrastructure Bill [HL] (HL Bill 2 of 2014-15)
The Infrastructure Bill makes provision for the Government's proposals to fund, plan, manage and maintain the UK's national infrastructure.
24.12.2012Growth and Infrastructure Bill (HL Bill 72 of 2012-13)
The purpose of the Growth and Infrastructure Bill is to promote investment in infrastructure projects, reduce delays in the planning system and introduce a new employment status of employee shareholder. This Library Note provides background information for the second reading of the Bill in the House of Lords on 8 January 2013.
09.11.2012Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill (HL Bill 45 of 2012-13)
The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill includes measures for changes to competition policy, to employment law, and for reducing regulation, as well as provisions on the Green Investment Bank, directors' remuneration, copyright and planning. This Library Note provides background reading in advance of the Bill's second reading in the House of Lords.
27.05.2011Localism Bill (HL Bill 71 of 2010-12)
This Library Note summarises proceedings at the Localism Bill's final stages in the House of Commons and provides background information for the Bill's second reading debate in the House of Lords.

POSTnotes

DateDescription
26.03.2015Biodiversity Auditing
Biodiversity supports the ecosystem services humans rely on for well-being and economic resources. Areas that have had an audit can make more effective use of ecological data to meet planning and conservation objectives for biodiversity. This POSTnote summarises the data sources used and the advantages of the audit approach for addressing biodiversity loss.
08.08.2014Big and Open Data in Transport
This POSTnote examines key factors affecting the growth of big data in transport and current and future applications, focusing on road and public transport. It also explores challenges to opening up, collecting, disseminating and using big data, and to sharing data whilst protecting users' privacy.
18.06.2014Ancient Woodland
Ancient woodlands are irreplaceable features of our landscapes that can be high in biodiversity or cultural value. This POSTnote summarises the challenges of conserving the biodiversity and cultural heritage of these sites to provide social and economic benefits, while still meeting the development needs of society.
15.11.2013Urban Green Infrastructure
Urban green infrastructure is a network of green spaces, water and other natural features within urban areas. A green infrastructure approach uses natural processes to deliver multiple functions, such as reducing the risk of flooding and cooling high urban temperatures. This POSTnote summarises research evidence of the effectiveness of green infrastructure, and challenges to its implementation.
05.02.2013Biodiversity & Planning Decisions
Built developments and mineral extraction can bring social benefits. However, if developments decrease biodiversity there could be a net loss of human well-being. Planning policy is devolved and this POSTnote sets out how the information on impacts of proposed developments on biodiversity is given to planners in England. It also summarises approaches to enhance biodiversity and avoid, mitigate and compensate for negative impacts.
15.03.2012Livestock Super Farms
This POSTnote examines the current issues surrounding intensification of livestock production in the UK.

Select Committee Reports

DateDescription
23.06.2011The abolition of regional spatial strategies: a planning vacuum.
Government response. Communities and Local Government report [Commons]
28.02.2011The abolition of regional spatial strategies.
Communities and Local Government Select Committee report [Commons]
02.11.2009Need and impact: planning for town centres.
Government response. Communities and Local Government; Communities and Local Government Select Committee report [Commons]
13.07.2009Need and impact: planning for town centres.
Communities and Local Government Select Committee report [Commons]
17.06.2009Planning for homes: speeding up planning applications for major housing developments in England.
Public Accounts Committee report [Commons]

Early Day Motions

DateDescription
05.12.2011DERELICT LAND AT WELLINGTON STREET / CROSS LANE, MANCHESTER
That this House expresses its disgust with Mr R. Street of Woodhouses, Manchester, landowner and Associated British Foods PLC, head lessee, whose avarice and lack of concern mean that ...
14.11.2011DEVELOPMENT IN BOLTON-LE-SANDS
That this House notes that Lancaster City Council has granted planning permission for 77 new homes on a greenfield site in Bolton-le-Sands; further notes that the only reason the Council ...
19.01.2011CARTER RUCK
That this House notes with concern the report in The Guardian of 19 January 2011 that the solicitors Carter Ruck threatened the Soil Association with libel proceedings in order to bully ...
08.12.2010GE LIGHTING SITE, LEICESTER
That this House notes with concern that, four years after the GE Lighting factory on Melton Road in Leicester closed, the problem of contaminated land has not been resolved; further ...
03.12.2010NORTH WEST PLANNING AID
That this House recognises the work carried out by the North West Planning Aid (NWPA) service, that for over 30 years has provided invaluable help to local individual and groups and ...

Glossary

  • Commons Briefing Papers (CBP) Papers providing in-depth and impartial analysis on every major piece of primary legislation and on other topics of public and parliamentary concern. Regular statistics papers are also published.
  • Early Day Motions (EDMs) - formal motions submitted by MPs in the House of Commons
  • POSTnotes (POST PN) - proactive four-page policy briefings from the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology based on reviews of the research literature, interviews with stakeholders and peer review, commissioned by the POST Board
  • Lords Library Notes (LLN) - authored publications by the research section of the House of Lords Library that provide analysis of Bills, subjects for debate in the House and other issues of interest to Members.
  • Select Committee Reports - papers produced by all select committees of both Houses