Football stadiums, car plants and exhibition centres are some of the developments that can now benefit from a fast-track planning process designed to create jobs and boost economy.
Planning Minister Nick Boles has announced that the fast-track system, used for deciding nationally significant infrastructure projects, will be widened to cover the most significant business and commercial projects that safeguard and deliver new jobs in the trades.
Previously the scheme was only open to nationally significant infrastructure projects in the transport, energy, water, waste and waste water sectors.
Under the proposed changes developers can ask for their application to be determined at a national level through the infrastructure planning system. This will ensure decisions are made within 12 months from the beginning of examination.
The government proposes to include a wider range of developments including:
- manufacturing and processing: eg car factories and food processing plants
- leisure, tourism, sports and recreation: eg sports stadiums, theme parks and hotel complexes
- offices and research and development centres
- warehousing, storage and distribution sites
- conference and exhibition centres
- aggregate and industrial minerals: eg sand, gravel.
Planning Minister Nick Boles said: “We are determined to help bring about new investment and jobs. Making sure businesses can have confidence in quicker and better planning decisions is an important part of that.
“Opening up the fast-track system will help get sustainable development underway sooner and minimise delays that only bring uncertainty for local people and businesses looking to create jobs.”