New Planning Bill Announced in Queen's Speech

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Only six days after the Housing and Planning Act 2016 received Royal Assent, the Government has announced its intention to introduce yet further changes to the planning landscape.

Today's Queen's Speech introduced a number of new bills and amongst these, the Neighbourhood Planning and Infrastructure Bill ("the Bill") intended to support the Government’s ambition to deliver one million new homes, whilst protecting those areas that we value most including the Green Belt, deliver the homes and infrastructure that this country needs and transform the way we plan for major infrastructure projects in this country.

From a planning perspective, key elements of the Bill are:

  • Neighbourhood Planning – to give more power to local people as part of the Government's localism drive                      
  • Planning Conditions – to tackle the excessive use of pre-commencement conditions which can hold up development
  • Compulsory Purchase – to make the compulsory purchase order process clearer, fairer and faster and to reform the compensation framework
  • National Infrastructure Commission - to establish the independent National Infrastructure Commission on a statutory basis

The Bill’s substantive provisions will apply across England and Wales. Little further information is available at present, but suffice to say further significant changes to the way planning decisions are made are on the horizon.