Outdated guidance and unenforceable design ideas will be replaced with plans to deliver beautiful homes that families and communities are proud to call their own, through a brand-new building design guide launched today by Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick.
Currently there is no accepted national standard for the development of homes, only vague documents with little enforceable power. This new design guide will introduce a national standard for local authorities to adhere to, with the option of designing their own applicable guides reflecting local needs. Where possible emphasis will be placed on tree-lined streets and green infrastructure, in line with the government’s broader environmental focus.
The design guide, published by the government today, will have genuine clout and be capable of being a material consideration in planning applications and appeals, meaning that local planning authorities should take it into account when taking decisions. Ministers will lay a Written Ministerial Statement setting out its purpose and how it is expected to be used, while the National Planning Policy Framework will be updated to reflect this at the first opportunity.
The government is determined to enhance the roles of local authorities, combined authorities and mayors in owning the aesthetics and development of their areas. The new design guide is part of a broader commitment to localism. It will provide local residents with a greater say in the design of homes built in their own area, allowing them to take the key characteristics provided at a national level as a foundation and apply them in the most locally appropriate way.
This new vision will enhance the roles of local authorities, combined authorities and mayors in shaping the aesthetics and development of their areas.
We will make the planning system work in support of better design and style, not against it.
Robert Jenrick, the Housing Secretary, said:
“The government is committed to building the homes this country needs, but it is not all about bricks, mortar and numbers. Too often, new developments come at the expense of beauty, quality and design. This shouldn’t be the case and the Conservatives are determined to deliver homes that families and communities are proud to call their own.
“As Housing Secretary, I am replacing the existing vague and outdated guidance with a brand-new national design guide. It will be produced with a more ambitious and firmer vision for better designed homes.
“This new design guide will have real clout. There will be a national standard for local authorities to adhere to, but we recognise that what good likes like differs across England. So, for the first-time local authorities will be expected to design their own locally applicable guides in keeping with the national standard, which must deliver the quality of homes that we expect.
“I want to put people at the heart of the housing process and provide a strong blueprint for building homes that families are proud to live in, recognising beauty and design in the most locally appropriate way.”