Good practice in sustainable design and construction
A new good-practice guide on how to achieve sustainable development through sustainable design and construction, and local plan-making, has produced for use by local planning authorities in England, together with landowners, developers, businesses, town and parish councils, community groups and others.
Good practice guidance: sustainable design and construction has been put together by cross-sector collaboration, led by the Building Research Establishment (BRE) with contributions from groups including the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA) and the Royal Town Planning Institute.
The guide aims to assist plan-making and development management in support of local planning authorities’ statutory duty to contribute to the achievement of sustainable development, of which sustainable design and construction is an integral part.
“The purpose of the planning system is to contribute to the achievement of sustainable development …
… To achieve sustainable development, economic, social and environmental gains should be sought
jointly and simultaneously through the planning system …
… Good design is a key aspect of sustainable development, is indivisible from good planning, and
should contribute positively to making places better for people …
… Local planning authorities should adopt proactive strategies to mitigate and adapt to climate change,
taking full account of flood risk, coastal change and water supply and demand considerations …”
National Planning Policy Framework,
Department for Communities and Local Government, March 2012
The guidance cannot cover all planning policy issues that have a bearing on sustainable design and construction. Some of this material, including flood risk, is dealt with in the Technical Guidance to the National Planning Policy Framework. It should also be considered alongside other guidance available on climate change, green infrastructure and the natural environment.
The guidance was developed following an independently chaired event held at BRE Watford in December 2011 attended by representatives of a range of developer, environmental, government, community and professional interests. There was a consensus that there was a need for good practice guidance on sustainable design and construction to underpin the NPPF, not least to avoid a proliferation of local sustainability standards and assessment methods that could confuse users of the planning system.
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