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Mayor of London publishes character and context planning guidance

Mayor of London Boris Johnson has published supplementary guidance to help developers, planning authorities and local community groups approach planning matters with the distinctive character and context of London's districts in mind.30 Jun 2014

The mayor's draft character and context supplementary planning guidance (97-page / 22.8 MB PDF) details the approach to be taken by planning decision-makers and applicants to ensure that they meet existing requirements in the London Plan, the London View Management Framework and the Opportunity Area Framework for considering the impacts of proposed developments on their local areas.

The document lists four "guiding principles" for considering local character and context: recognising that every place has "a distinctive character"; understanding that "character is about people and communities as well as the physical components"; giving regard to the importance of "boundaries, edges and transitions" between localities; and understanding that "character is a dynamic concept - evolution and change are fundamental characteristics of London."

"Planning for neighbourhoods in a city as dynamic and diverse as London is a tricky business", said Johnson in a statement. "This guidance aims to ensure that areas do not lose their unique character while allowing developers to continue to bring forward innovative and though-provoking schemes."

The mayor is also currently consulting on a draft supplementary guidance on social infrastructure. The guidance will "help planners and non-planners to work together so that social infrastructure can be built where it is most needed", said a statement from the mayor's office.

Consultation on the draft social infrastructure supplementary planning guidance (107-page / 3.4 MB PDF) is open until September.