A six-week consultation has been launched by Shetland Islands Council to find out what the community thinks of its new local planning guidance document known as “placemaking”.
Council planning official Jonny Wiseman said placemaking was an approach which aimed to provide pointers to local development.
He said: “Placemaking is aimed at architects, planning agents and also the self-build market. The Scottish government has identified six key design principles of a ‘successful place’ – distinctive, safe and pleasant, easy to move around, welcoming, adaptable, and resource efficient. The guidance has been put together to help ensure that any proposed new developments will meet these criteria.
“Shetland is a distinctive place and we should nurture that. We want new development to reflect that, and not to detract from it. We need to consider not just the buildings themselves, but the spaces between them: the green spaces, the roads and the paths”.
The draft guidance aims to ensure high-quality design and thoughtful layout for all new developments in Shetland, creating attractive places that are in harmony with their surroundings.
The consultation document, entitled Placemaking, brings together national planning policy and guidance in a Shetland context. The final document will form supplementary guidance to the Shetland Local Development Plan 2014, setting out the policies and criteria against which any planning applications will be considered.
Chairman of the council’s development committee, councillor Alastair Cooper, said: “It’s not always obvious how things come together to make a great place but this placemaking guide shows how this can be done. Well designed places obviously improve how we interact with our surroundings and improve our quality of life. I’d urge anyone with a view on the design of the built environment in Shetland to respond to this consultation.”
The consultation documents are available online at www.shetland.gov.uk/planning/LocalDevelopmentPlan.asp or at the Council offices at 8 North Ness, Lerwick and Shetland Library. Anyone with comments should respond by 22nd March.