Place Shaping and Infrastructure

Purpose

The purpose of the network is to support members and officers to influence the development of policy and legislation on planning and regeneration, and to build member capacity on these areas of work. The group and associated networks act as a regional mechanism for sharing good practice, knowledge and information between councils, and deliver capacity building events and resource materials on relevant issues.

Councillor Stevie Corr, Chair

Network Members - Cllr Stevie Corr (BCC) Chair, Cllr Julie Flaherty (ABC) Vice-Chair, Cllr Alison Bennington (A&N), Cllr Eddie Thompson (A&ND), Cllr Sam Nicholson (ABC), Cllr Shauneen Baker (BCC), Ald Joan Baird (CCG), Cllr Paul Fleming (D&S), Cllr Glenn Campbell (F&O), Cllr Jenny Palmer (LCCC), Cllr Robert Logan (MEA) & Cllr Wesley Brown (MU). 

ROLE OF THE NETWORK

Democratic Scrutiny of: Departmental and partner organisation input in relation to priority planning, place-shaping and infrastructure issues, and to develop regional policy approaches on these and related issues.

Monitoring the progress of the relationship between government departments and councils on to priority planning, place-shaping and infrastructure issues, including relationships with arms-length bodies

Oversight of the partnership work between local and central government and partners on delivery of key issues impacting on councils, and on which council can have an influence.

Promotion of good practice: Development of collaborative approaches, development of elected member understanding and awareness of priority issues

Lobbying for improvements and for resources to deliver

COVID-19

Covid-19 has decimated local and global economies. The roles of councils are – and will continue to be - completely refocussed as a result. Local democracy and the councils upholding it have a renewed opportunity to make a case for localism, with powers and resources coming to communities via local authorities. After Covid-19, it is the case that there is a better appreciation that local government remains an under-utilised and markedly under-resourced part of our public services delivery and our democratic governance here in N. Ireland, despite councils meeting huge and increased challenges in terms of constituent, corporate, local and regional (NI) work.

Outcomes to be achieved by May 2023

Planning

Initiation and completion of DfI review of planning legislation including development of legislation to enable councils to set their own planning fees

Initiation and completion of DfI review of planning policy including Strategic Planning Policy, renewable energy policy and policy on sustainable development in the countryside

Completion of a satisfactory review of the Code of Conduct as it relates to planning matters

Place-shaping

Successful lobbying and collaborative work to achieve completion of the transfer of regeneration powers

Initiation of central-local policy work towards transfer of further place-shaping powers and accompanying resources

Elected members will be furnished with contemporary information on innovative work/thinking to develop approaches to housing supply, developer contributions, urban design and landscape architecture

Infrastructure

Appropriate and adequate central-local plans in place to address infrastructure deficits:

water and sewerage, digital & broadband and energy

Elected members will be furnished with contemporary information on the deficits listed above

 

PRIORITIES LIST

  1. Addressing the Infrastructure Deficit, particularly water and sewerage
  2. Housing supply – addressing the lack of acceptable, affordable and social housing
  3. Housing location - choice of where to live, developing the right housing in the right place, tackling stigma in social housing
  4. Climate change action infrastructure/addressing flood risk
  5. Securing regeneration powers for councils
  6. Rural infrastructure and connectivity
  7. Digital Infrastructure/Broadband connections
  8. Roads and Rail Infrastructure
  9. Keeping up to date with progress on LDPs and community plans - the story so far/what next?
  10. Improving urban design – exploring good practice from around the world
  11. Linking infrastructure to community planning and well-being – active travel, greenways, green spaces etc
  12. Community involvement in the planning of spaces
  13. Practicalities - Communication of vision, delivery, costs

KEY DATES 

2020

August

Conference and forward planning meeting

October

Conference  - Placemaking Post-COVID  – powers and tools, design, quality, future-proofing

2021

January

As per workplan priorities set in August 2020

April

As per workplan priorities set in August 2020

October

Mid Term Review

Regional Event

2022

January

As per workplan priorities set in October 2021

April

As per workplan priorities set in October 2021

October

As per workplan priorities set in October 2021

2023

January

As per workplan priorities set in October 2021

 

Mar/April

Final meeting pre-election. Report on achieving  outcomes

Session 2 - Richhill Video - Webinar Series

Place - S

NILGA Support Officer

Please fill in the following form to get in touch with the NILGA support officer for this Network.

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