Guernsey Press

Only complex sites could require development frameworks in future

Development frameworks could be needed only for more complex sites in future, in a bid to make best use of planners’ time.

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Under the proposals released last month, development frameworks would be required only for more challenging or high-profile projects, such as part of the Saltpans site which is designated as a housing allocation site in the Island Development Plan. (33407557)

Frameworks were introduced in 2016 for developments of 30 or more dwellings in main centres, 15 or more dwellings in local centres, or for other specified sites or forms of development.

They provide information about how sites can be used and consider issues such as housing density and traffic. But they have been accused of slowing development as developers wait for frameworks to be drawn up before investing in land and building homes.

The Development & Planning Authority has now responded by recommending more limitations on the use of frameworks, as part of its proposed changes to the Island Development Plan.

‘Despite the benefits of development frameworks for large, complex sites and of collaborative working across the States, the DPA has been concerned by the length of time the development framework process can take and the resources required, which can be disproportionate to the value added by the process,’ it said.

Under the proposals released last month, development frameworks would be required only for more challenging or high-profile projects, such as housing allocation sites on Burnt Lane, off Grande Rue car park, off Route des Coutanchez, and the Saltpans mixed use development area/Franc Fief.

A framework would also be need for the key industrial area at La Villiaze, which will be prepared in conjunction with an Airport masterplan

‘However, the DPA will be able to require a development framework for other sites if it thinks there are particularly difficult circumstances that would justify one,’ it said.

Other proposed changes include introducing a screening process for sites to make an earlier assessment of whether they require a development framework, as well as publishing new guidance explaining how members of the public, including parish officials, can make representations and participate more in the development framework process when one is required.

There have been 28 development frameworks approved since 2016, but the number has fallen over the years.

In 2017 there were 15, but in 2021 there were none and in 2022 there was only one.

A review of development frameworks, carried out before publication of the proposed reforms, found no evidence to support an argument made by some developers and politicians that the need for frameworks was preventing some development sites from coming forward, although it accepted they were an additional frustrations on small, simple residential sites.

The changes to development frameworks are among the IDP proposals on which public feedback is invited, with details available at

A planning inquiry on revisions to the IDP is scheduled to take place later this year and the DPA hopes to take final proposals to the States before the end of its term in June 2025.