Strategic Planning - Frequently Asked Questions
The guidance below has been drawn from the Planning Advisory Service web
- What is meant by the term ‘strategic
is strategic planning important?
- Where can I find out more?
- Q. What is
meant by the term ‘strategic planning’?
A. Even local plan-making will have a ‘strategic’ element to it.
However the term ‘strategic planning’ is more commonly used to
describe polices that address ‘larger than local’ issues that
cannot be dealt with by one local planning authority working alone.
- The provision for new housing across a major conurbation or
wider ‘housing market area’.
- The provision of major retail, leisure, industrial and other
economic development across a ‘travel to work’ area.
- The provision of infrastructure for transport, waste treatment,
energy generation, telecommunications, water supply and water
- Requirements for minerals extraction.
- The provision of heath, security, and major community
- Measures needed to address the causes and consequences of
climate change, including managing flood risk and coastal change;
and Protection and enhancement of the natural and historic
environment, including townscape.
The priority given to these issues will depend on local
circumstances and strategic approaches may not be required in every
- Q. Why is
strategic planning important?
A. Many social, environmental and economic issues can only be
effectively addressed at a ‘larger than local’ scale.
People and businesses do not confine their activities to one
- employees may live in one area and work in another, sometimes
travelling large distances on a daily basis;
- suppliers may service many local shops from a small number of
distribution centres linked to major transport hubs;
- a retail development in one locality may attract customers from
across a wide catchment area; and
- people may travel hundreds of miles to visit tourist
attractions, leisure facilities or sporting venues on a regular
Similarly, from an environmental perspective:
- residents in some areas may consume water and power that has
travelled hundreds of miles;
- surface water run-off in one location may present a flooding
hazard to communities further ‘downstream’; and
- water and air pollution may have a damaging impact on
environmental assets some distance away.
The planning system needs to understand these relationships and put
in place policies that will manage their impacts if it is to
deliver ‘sustainable’ development at a local level.
- Q. Where can I
find out more?
A. The Planning Advisory Service (PAS) will be producing ‘Simple
Guide to Strategic Planning’ with case studies and a shorter
summary document, which will be piloted at series of regional
events in February 2012. For further details please visit http://www.pas.gov.uk/.
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This page was last reviewed 12 June 2013 at 11:08.
The page is next due for review 9 December 2014.