The Cabinet had before it a * report of the Head of Planning Economy and Regeneration requesting it to approve the draft Mid Devon Design Guide Supplementary Planning Document for Public Consultation.
The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Regeneration outlined the contents of the report stating that the Draft Design Guide would expand on local plan policy for design and provide detailed guidance on urban, village and rural design issues in Mid Devon. It was intended to raise design awareness and standards throughout the planning process and he outlined the consultants used for the exercise. He continued by adding that regular and meaningful stakeholder engagement had been essential in shaping the design guide to date. A series of stakeholder sessions had been held with local agents, architects, developers, statutory consultees, neighbourhood plan groups, town and parish councils, and elected members. Those sessions had usefully helped shape both the methodological approach and usability of the Design Guide
As a result, the Draft Design Guidance was structured into four volumes and a pocket toolkit as follows:
· Volume 1 – Procedural guidance: This sets out the overarching core principles for the Design Guide as well as some background information and context. It also explains how to navigate through the guide.
· Volume 2 – Designing for Landscape and Settlement Form: This volume provides a step by step guide to preparing design responses to landscape, settlement form and site situation. It also provides framework design guidance for each of the 3 main towns and additional guidance for development in the countryside,
· Volume 3 – Compendium of District Design. This volume represents a study of the built environment in Mid Devon and provides a summary of the treatment of each feature and the contribution it can make to good design.
· Volume 4 – Special Topic Guides – This final section provides guidance on specific ‘special topics’ (e.g. custom and self build).
· Pocket ‘toolkit’ enabled the Council’s officers and applicants easy ‘table-top’ use of the Design Guide to inform discussions at the pre-application stage and throughout the application process.
Subject to approval, a six week public consultation was proposed to be undertaken, commencing on a date to be agreed. Once the consultation had ended and all comments have been taken into account, the final version of the Design Guide would be presented to a future meeting of the Cabinet with a recommendation to adopt the document as an SPD.
Consideration was given to how useful the initial workshops had been in formation of the guide.
1. The draft Mid Devon Design Guide Supplementary Planning Document (comprising Appendices 1 to 5 to this report), the Strategic Environmental Assessment Screening Report (Appendix 6 to this report) and the Habitat Regulations Assessment Screening Report (Appendix 7 to this report) be approved for public consultation.
2. That delegated authority be given to the Head of Planning, Economy and Regeneration in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Regeneration to finalise the material and arrangements for consultation.
(Proposed by Cllr G Barnell and seconded by Cllr Mrs N Woollatt)
Note: *Report previously circulated, copy attached to minutes.