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The value of planning in Wales

RTPI Cymru has published a new toolkit which measures the value generated by planning. The tool has been developed to capture the economic, social and environmental value at a local planning authority (LPA) level across Wales.

 

The tool and its 'Value Dashboard' has been designed to provide RTPI Cymru and the Welsh Government with a platform to demonstrate to local authorities, national policy makers, the private sector, researchers and other broader policy and media audiences, the value planning contributes and how planning is positively contributing to Wales' seven well-being goals.

When applied across Wales it finds that in 2016/17 public planning services brought about £122.4m of developers' contributions to public infrastructure and projects; some £2.47m of recreational benefits as a result of open spaces; at least £750,000 of community benefits in health; and over £17m of fees which helped to support local authority planning departments amid growing financial pressure.

According to the tool, granting planning permissions and enabling the completion of developments also lifted land values by more than £2.2billion, which helped to create a positive investment environment for the economy for the delivery of homes and infrastructure.

This work was commissioned by RTPI Policy, Practice and Research team in London and RTPI Cymru, and conducted by Arup with help from JLL. This project is kindly supported by Welsh Government.

Background

At the RTPI Cymru Wales Planning Conference in June 2016, Lesley Griffiths AM, Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Rural Affairs, set out five 'asks' of the planning system and those involved in delivering it, including the need to recognise the value of planning and the economic value that creates.

This research project, conducted by Arup, responded to this challenge by developing and testing a framework for capturing the economic, social and environmental value delivered by local authority planning.

This is especially important given reduced resourcing for local authorities and the increasing pressures on local authority planning departments in particular, and also the context of the Well-being of Future Generations Act 2015.

Stakeholder launch event

A stakeholder launch event for the project was held in Cardiff in May 2017. The purpose of the event was to bring together various representatives from the planning and built environment professions to ask participants what they thought we should measure for the project and how we should measure it.

In order to focus the event, the seven well-being goals set-out in the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015 were used to guide discussions and organise the breakout groups.

A summary of the discussions is included in an event summary note.