Digital Planning Policy and Legislation

The Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill was introduced in parliament on 11 May 2022 and outlines the government’s plans to level up the United Kingdom. It proposes improvements to the current planning system.

The bill includes a number of measures which will allow a transformation in the use of high-quality data and modern, digital services across the planning process, including powers to set common data standards and software requirements. The five planning data powers relate to:

  • (Clause 78) Power in relation to the processing of planning data
  • (Clause 79) Power in relation to the provision of planning data
  • (Clause 80) Power to require certain planning data to be made publicly available
  • (Clause 81) Power to require use of approved planning data software in England
  • (Clause 82) Disclosure of planning data does not infringe copyright in certain cases

Our powers will improve the current planning system by:

  • Setting consistent data standards on how planning authorities will be required to receive and process planning data
  • Publishing data openly, which will allow for anyone to reuse planning data free of charge
  • Ensuring planning authorities use approved planning software that supports a modern and data driven planning system

What does this mean for local planning authorities and communities?

These powers are intended to support a modern digital planning system to:

  • Enable high-quality, open data that underpins the planning system to be easily accessible, which will drive better informed decision-making by local planning authorities to deliver the developments communities want in their local areas
  • Deliver a more efficient and user-friendly planning system, with local planning authorities making best use of modern, digital tools and services
  • Enable more people, and a more diverse range of people, to engage with the planning system to better understand the trade-offs and benefits involved with proposed developments in their local areas
  • Transform the relationship between communities, planning authorities and developers

You can read more about our planning data powers (Clause 78-82) in the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill.