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Fri April 19 2019

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Decision times improve for major Scottish schemes

29 Jan Latest figures from Scotland’s chief statistician show an improvement in the speed of planning decisions for major developments – particularly housing - with timings for smaller schemes holding steady.

The figures cover the number of planning applications and average decision times for the first six months of the 2018/19 year.

The overall average decision time for all 112 major development applications concluded in the first six months of 2018/19 was 34.6 weeks, which was 1.6 weeks quicker than the 36.2 weeks for the same period in the previous year. In addition, there were 61 major applications decided that were subject to processing agreements with 43 (70%) of these meeting agreed timescales.

The average decision time for major housing developments decided in the first six months of 2018/19 was quicker by almost four weeks compared to the same period in 2017/18. There were 52 major housing developments decided during the first six months of 2018/19, the same as in the equivalent period in the previous year. The average decision time for these 52 major housing applications was 37.0 weeks, compared to 40.9 weeks for the equivalent period in the previous year.

The overall average decision time for all 13,391 local applications concluded in the first six months of 2018/19 was 8.9 weeks, which was the same as for the equivalent period in the previous year. There were 425 fewer applications than in the equivalent period in the previous year. There were also decisions taken on 1,051 local developments that had processing agreements in place, with 786 (75%) of these meeting agreed timescales.

The average decision time for the 6,796 local development applications decided in quarter one was 8.9 weeks. In quarter two 6,595 applications had an average decision time of 8.8 weeks, matching the quickest time for any previous quarter.

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In quarter one the percentage of decisions made in less than two months was 75.5%, down from the corresponding quarter one figure of 77.6% in the previous year. In quarter two the percentage of decisions made in less than two months was 75.7%, up from the corresponding quarter two figure of 74.3% in the previous year.

The average decision time for local housing developments decided in the first six months of 2018/19 was quicker by almost three days than the equivalent period in 2017/18, said the report.

There were 2,396 decisions made on local housing applications subject to average time calculations in the first six months of 2018/19. The average decision time was 12.1 weeks, quicker by almost three days than over the same period in 2017/18 (12.5 weeks).

The average decision time for the 1,221 local housing applications decided in quarter one was 12.0 weeks, slightly quicker than the 12.2 weeks for quarter one in the previous year. In quarter two 1,175 applications had an average decision time of 12.1 weeks, quicker by almost five days than the 12.8 weeks for quarter two in the previous year.

The overall rate of approvals for all types of application (including legacy applications) was 93.7% in the first quarter of 2018/19 and 93.5% in quarter two. These were both slightly lower than the corresponding rates of 94.1% and 93.9% for the respective quarters in the previous year.

MPU

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