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The Value of Early Engagement in Planning 

Land must be used more effectively to benefit everyone who lives in Scotland. Our work on early engagement looks at the benefits of getting communities involved earlier in decision-making on plans helping to produce better places, speeding up delivery of new developments and shaping the quality of the places that Scotland needs.

Better community engagement is an established aim of ongoing Scottish planning and land reform policy. We are providing practical advice on how landowners, land managers and communities can work together to make better – and fairer – decisions about land use. Using the Land Rights and Responsibilities Statement (LRRS) as a framework to set out good practice for community engagement in decisions about land. In the development context, significant land use change is regulated through the planning system which sets out what is expected of development in terms of wider consultation and engagement.  

You can read more about the value of early engagement in planning in our report and its summary below, and in the accompanying blog. We have also included a selection of the case studies contained in the report.

For an in-depth discussion, watch our webinar with Planning Skills. 

More guidance and practical resources about community engagement in land based decision-making are available though our Good Practice Programme.

Case Studies

Killearn: three-way consultation

Although consultation was not a requirement for the Killearn housing development, the developer ensured that the local community was given the opportunity to positively influence the design.

link to Killearn: three-way consultation case study

Countesswells, Aberdeen: a structure for community liaison

In the Countesswells development, the communities' liaison group became a proactive participant in the development and design process.

link to Countesswells, Aberdeen: a structure for community liaison case study

Inverkeithing: Building quality, trust and community

Kingdom Housing Association’s highly praised phased regeneration project in Inverkeithing has engaged tenants and local residents in the design and decision-making process.

link to Inverkeithing: Building quality, trust and community case study

Dalmarnock: a masterplanning approach

Clyde Gateway is a public urban regeneration agency in Glasgow’s east end and Rutherglen, which worked on the South Dalmarnock Integrated Urban Infrastructure Framework masterplan to unlock development opportunities in an area of significant post-industrial decline and dereliction.

link to Dalmarnock: a masterplanning approach case study

Fort William 2040: better proposals, better outcomes

Wider community engagement on placemaking as part of the Fort William 2040 project coincided with engagement on a particularly significant development for the Fort William community.

link to Fort William 2040: better proposals, better outcomes case study

Winchburgh: building long term community relationships

The Winchburgh project is a substantial extension to a small existing settlement in West Lothian where the lead developer has put great emphasis on community engagement.

link to Winchburgh: building long term community relationships case study