RIBA scores a win for decent design in new planning policy

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has strongly welcomed the government's final National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), which after significant calls from the RIBA recognises the crucial importance of high-quality design.

The NPPF - which comes into force today - includes the following amendments as a result of the RIBA's advice to government:

  • A strengthening of policy on design and providing greater weight for the advice of design review panels
  • Enshrining high-quality design as a core planning principle
  • Greater clarity over the definition of sustainable development
  • The announcement of transitional arrangements to allow local authorities to develop Local Plans
  • Strengthening of provisions to encourage the development of brownfield sites

Speaking today, RIBA Immediate Past President and Chair of the RIBA Planning Group, Ruth Reed said:

'We are delighted that the government has accepted many of the key recommendations put forward by the RIBA. Enshrining good design as a core planning principle and ensuring that the advice of design review panels has greater weight within the planning system will send a clear message to developers, planning officers and committees that poor-quality development will no longer be accepted.

However, policy alone will not deliver the good-quality built environment that our future generations deserve. Although the transitional arrangements announced today are welcome, we hope that the government will truly back the plan-led system by ensuring that local communities and local authorities have the support and resources they need to make the new system work.'


Notes to editors

  • For press enquires contact Howard Crosskey in the RIBA press office howard.crosskey@riba.org 020 73073761.
  • The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) champions better buildings, communities and the environment through architecture and our members. Visit www.architecture.com and follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/RIBA.
  • The National Planning Policy Framework can be downloaded on the Department for Communities and Local Government's website here.
  • Read the RIBA response to the draft National Planning Policy Framework, first published in October 2011 here.