ePlanning provides a more consistent level of service across Scotland and makes the planning system simpler, faster and more accessible.
It delivers a range of online and workplace tools, allowing the public and professionals alike to access policy documents, apply for planning permission, track progress, make comments, understand decisions, and where applicable appeal against a decision. ePlanning will improve the quality and availability of local development plans and planning information online.
ePlanning offers a range of improved electronic services including:
- Finding out what is planned in an area;
- Getting immediate answers to initial enquiries;
- Submitting applications and appeals;
- Viewing and interacting with local development plans;
- Track progress and make comments;
- Understanding planning decisions; and
- A mechanism to consult with statutory consultees electronically.
ePlanning adds to services offered over the internet by the Scottish Government, local authorities, and national park authories, moving planning away from paper processes to more effective methods of working. It is a recognised vehicle for successful delivery of a modernised planning system for Scotland and has the potential to release efficiencies in government and business.
Efficient government programme
The ePlanning project is a partnership of all the key organisations involved with planning across Scotland - 32 councils, two National Parks, Scottish Environment Protection Agency, Scottish Natural Heritage, Historic Scotland, Scottish Water, Transport Scotland, Directorate for Planning and Environmental Appeals, and the Scottish Government.
Planning plays a central role in co-ordinating Scotland's sustainable economic growth. The ePlanning programme will deliver a step change in the way the planning service is delivered. Through the implementation of new technology the use of paper will be replaced with more effective electronic ways of working. The programme is made up of four interrelated projects.
- Online Local Development plans - Local Development Plans are at the heart of Scotland's planning system and set out: the appropriate locations for future development; which areas should receive special protection; and other essential proposals. They form the basis by which decisions on planning applications and appeals are made. By providing an online easy to use local mapping service, architects, developers and members of the public can interact with the local plan process, viewing documents as they are prepared and submit comments on proposed developments electronically.
- ePlanning.Scotland.gov.uk - The website is an online service providing easy to use forms for submitting planning applications and appeals. As the applications are completed the website guides the user through the appropriate steps and carries out automatic checks thereby reducing the number of incorrect planning applications submitted to planning authorities.
- Planning Information Online - Increasing the amount and quality of planning information available online makes the planning system more transparent, accessible and inclusive. ePlanning also allows the progress of applications to be automatically tracked, comments to be made and decisions better understood. The planning information made available online is accurate and up to date. Many planning authorities have already made good progress in displaying planning information online on their own websites. The central ePlanning programme enables these services to be accessible across Scotland from a single point of entry.
- eConsultation - will ease the move from paper to electronic consultation on planning applications, standardising processes between the planning authorities and external consultees.