Planning consultations tend to get a bit of a bad rap, bringing to mind outdated processes and consultation notices stuck to lampposts.

It’s not always that way, however; modern technology has the power to vastly improve the planning consultation process. Citizen Space lends itself well to planning departments, with the ability to publish responses and embed images or maps.

Here are a few good examples of planning consultations open at the moment on Citizen Space – you can check out over 20,000 more consultations on the Citizen Space Aggregator.

Proposed variations to the Dublin City Development Plan

Screenshot of 'Proposed Variations No. 28, 29 and 30 of the Dublin City Development Plan 2016 - 2022' consultation

Dublin is proposing three changes to its City Development Plan 2016-2022: an additional cycle route; a housing development instead of a proposed green space; and a zoning change.

Why it’s good: This is a great consultation. Each proposed change has its own chapter, with a map of the changes embedded in a fact bank. I particularly like that they’ve included a clear reason for each proposed change in its relative chapter. They’ve also opted to publish responses as they come in.

Why that matters: providing a clear reason for the changes, rather than just proposing them and asking for comments, arms the respondent with the information they need and fosters understanding – even if they’re opposed to the idea, they can see the council’s perspective, which in turn encourages a more considered response.

South Lakeland’s call for sites

South Lakeland in Cumbria are running a call for possible housing and employment sites.

Why it’s good: this is a ‘no-nonsense’ consultation: its use of plain language, concise questions and clearly defined chapters mean it’s easy to understand and respond to.

Why that matters: stakeholder consultations are often full of technical jargon and can be long and painful to fill out. This one is easy to understand and clear in its directives, saving the respondent time and frustration.

11,000 new council homes in Southwark

Screenshot of Southwark's '11,000 new council homes - Gaywood Estate' consultation
Planning process infographic

Southwark Council has ambitious plans to build 11,000 new social housing units across the borough. Part of the plans involve building on existing council estates, so residents of each estate are being asked their views.

Why it’s good: There’s a different survey for each development, and each one contains a map detailing where the proposed units would be. Also included is an infographic that sets out the planning process and an option within the survey for each respondent to be further involved in the project.

Why that matters: the planning process can be murky and confusing for residents, so the infographic is a really nice touch here. The question asking if residents want to be more involved demonstrates the council really wants residents’ continuous input on this – often a rarity in planning.

Thanks for reading. If you’d like to learn more about Citizen Space and how it supports spatial planning, you can book a free demo and we’ll walk you through it.