Westminster Energy, Environment & Transport Forum

Planning policy in England - accelerating the planning process, and supporting the delivery of new housing and major infrastructure projects

Morning, Thursday, 30th April 2020

Central London


This conference will discuss the next steps for planning policy in England - focusing on challenges for accelerating the planning process, developing local plans, and priorities for supporting the delivery of new housing and major infrastructure projects.

It is timed to:

  • Assess progress in implementing the revised National Planning Policy Framework;  
  • Follow the Accelerated Planning Green Paper, which is expected later this year and will set out Government’s plans aimed at streamlining and speeding up the planning system; and
  • Consider the impact of the National Infrastructure Strategy, which is set to be published later this year.

Streamlining the planning process

With the Accelerated Planning Green Paper due to be released later this year, delegates will consider:

  • The practicalities of streamlining the planning process - with discussion on the impact on those involved in the process, including developers, local authorities, and communities;
  • Whether more support and resource is needed within the planning system to implement changes aimed at increasing capacity and capability within local planning authorities; and
  • What can be learnt from alternative planning systems in terms of streamlining the planning process.

Supporting the delivery of nationally significant infrastructure projects

With the Government’s National Infrastructure Strategy due later this year delegates will also assess:

  • How best to tackle obstacles faced during the planning process of national, regional, and large-scale infrastructure projects;
  • Priorities for balancing environmental, local, and economic interests; and
  • A case study from a major project and what can be learned from navigating the planning process.

Local planning and delivering new and affordable homes

Delegates will also discuss priorities for planning at a local level with discussion planned on:

  • How to diversify the type of homes being built to meet housing needs;
  • Priorities for developing local plans and capturing land value around the development of new infrastructure projects;
  • Supporting the delivery of affordable, green housing at a local level; and
  • The impact of the Government’s mandatory approach to biodiversity net gain.

This discussion takes place in the context of:

Keynote Speaker

Steve Quartermain

Chief Planner, MHCLG

Keynote Speaker

Steve Quartermain

Chief Planner, MHCLG


Claire Dutch

Partner, Hogan Lovells International

Tracey Coleman

Director, Planning and Regeneration, Guildford Borough Council

Richard Blyth

Head of Policy, Royal Town Planning Institute