Consultation begins on future planning

New Inn Hotel, Ellon
New Inn Hotel, Ellon

Aberdeenshire’s Proposed Local Development Plan has now been published and is available for public comment until Friday, May 8.

It represents the “settled view” of Aberdeenshire Council and identifies sites for development and the policies to be used when making decisions on planning applications.

For the next six weeks, communities, developers and other interested parties have a chance to have their say.

A series of drop-in events will be held in communities across the area and a dedicated online portal has been set up to allow people to take part easily.

One of these events will be held at the New Inn Hotel, Ellon on Tuesday, April 21 from 1pm to 7pm.

Communities can come along to speak to planners and find out more about future development in their area.

Aberdeenshire Council’s Head of Planning and Building Standards, Robert Gray, said: “You may ask where and when more houses or businesses will be built in your area and whether the vision for your area is right for your community.

“I’d encourage anyone with an interest to come along to our sessions, discuss the proposed local development plan with the policy team and find out how to make their views known, or see the extensive information we’ve posted online.”

The plan will ultimately govern what will and will not be granted planning permission in the future.

The format of the proposed plan is different from the current Local Development Plan, with much more detail contained in the plan rather than in its associated supplementary guidance.

The proposed plan uses the theme of “Shaping Aberdeenshire” and contains the vision Aberdeenshire Council is promoting for its six administrative areas.

Detailed policies cover topics including “Shaping business development”, “Shaping development in the countryside” and “Shaping places”.

A more rigorous approach to mitigating and adapting to climate change issues has been included, in line with suggestions made in the 2013 Main Issues Report.

Representations from the consultation that cannot be resolved will be submitted to a Local Development Plan Examination.

By the end of 2016 Aberdeenshire should have an adopted and up-to-date new Local Development Plan.