The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) President Sunand Prasad has given the Institute's initial reaction to the Government's response to the Killian Pretty review of planning applications.
The review was commissioned by the Department for Communities and Local Government as a call for solutions to the cumbersome planning application process. Following a c onsultation open to all interested parties in September 2008, the RIBA called for simplification of the decision process and to encourage the use of Local Design Review Panels to encourage and facilitate design evaluation.
Commenting on the Government's response, Sunand Prasad said:
"While the RIBA welcomes much of the Government's response to the final report of the Killian Pretty review, we are disappointed both by the delay caused by adding further consultations to the process and by the Government's lack of ambition in accepting some of Killian Pretty's key recommendations.
"The Institute is pleased that Government has accepted its view that the timeliness targets for Local Authorities are having unintended consequences; their commitment to a new approach is most welcome. In the RIBA's response we also emphasised the need for extra design support at a local level and in particular we strongly believe that design review panels should be available to Local Planning Authorities. We are disappointed this significant element is missing, both from the report and its response, and will continue to highlight this to the Government.
"The RIBA will of course be contributing to the planned consultations looking at permitted development for non-residential sites, the amount of information required in applications and minor material variations to existing applications by summer 2009. Let that be the last delay in this vital simplification of the planning system."