Local Development Plan 2021

We are currently at stage 3 of the local development plan process and as such we have submitted the Proposed Local Development Plan (LDP) 2020 along with the Schedule 4s for examination.

Over the course of the next few years we will be developing a new Local Development Plan (LDP). Once in every 5 years we are required to publish a new plan for the area, excluding the Cairngorms National Park. This is to inform and advise developers and communities on the principles that built development should follow and where it should be located.

The Local Development Plan has to take into account the National Planning Framework, and be consistent with the Aberdeen City and Shire Strategic Development Plan.

Every year, we publish a Development Plan Scheme which sets out the programme for the delivery of the Local Development Plan.

Legislation is changing as part of the planning reforms and the Scottish Government is moving forward with the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019. As the new LDP will be delivered in 2021 it will be prepared using the existing legislation. It is proposed that transitional arrangements will be announced by the Scottish Government to manage the changeover from current to new-style LDPs.

Preparation of the plan

There are 4 stages of the local development planning process. Each stage has substantial information produced to justify the council's position. Watch the Local Development Plan short film to find out how our local development plan is produced.

Stage 1 

The Main Issues Report and Draft Proposed Local Development Plan were published on 14th January 2019 and were subject to public consultation until 8th April 2019. Nearly 1200 representations were received. This information is now historical but you can view the Main Issues Report on the archive page.

Issues and Actions papers were then produced which contain council officers’ responses to the issues raised during the public consultation.

Between August and September 2019 our area committees met to debate the issues raised. They agreed the actions necessary to take forward for the next stage in the process. Infrastructure Services Committee then considered any outstanding issues or inconsistencies between area views and have made recommendation on the content of the Proposed Local Development Plan to the council.

Stage 2 

The Proposed Local Development Plan was presented to Full Council on 5th March 2020 where local members agreed that the content of the proposed plan 2020 provides the settled view of the council on the plan they wish to see adopted in 2021. Formal consultation on the Proposed Local Development Plan (LDP) 2020 and the Strategic Environmental Assessment Environmental Report took place between 25th May and 31st July 2020.

The Proposed Local Development Plan, the Strategic Environmental Assessment Environmental Report and a range of supporting documents and information are available to view online on our dedicated Proposed Local Development Plan (LDP) 2020 page.

Unfortunately it is not available to view the Proposed Local Development Plan in public libraries or at council Planning offices.

Stage 3 - current stage

Officers have completed the summaries (known as Schedule 4s) of the representations made on the Proposed Local Development Plan. Nearly 1,400 representations were received. In March 2021, the Proposed Local Development Plan along with the Schedule 4s were submitted to the Directorate of Planning and Environmental Appeals (DPEA) for examination.

Scottish Ministers will appoint a person from the Directorate of Planning and Environmental Appeals (DPEA). This person is called a reporter and their role is to examine the plan. This includes consideration of any unresolved matters raised by representees.

The proposed LDP 2020 is a material consideration in the determination of planning applications. The planning authority must assess what weight it should have in determining planning applications. As the proposed LDP is still to be subject to examination by an independent reporter, it is considered that the level of weight that should be applied to the proposed LDP 2020 is not significant. The Aberdeenshire LDP 2017 remains the up to date LDP for the area and the primary document against which planning applications should be determined until such time as a new LDP for the area is adopted.

Stage 4

After the examination and the reporter's conclusion on any objections received, the council needs to consider the DPEA recommendations. The finalised Local Development Plan that we wish to adopt is then proposed to Scottish Ministers. This is likely to be in late 2021/ early 2022.

Updates on progress

You can stay up to date by viewing our regular newsletters on the Local Development Plan progress. You can also subscribe to LDP email updates by sending us an email. View LDP email subscription privacy notice (pdf 83.2KB).

View the council's response to the Scottish Government’s call for ideas on the National Planning Framework 4 (pdf 901KB).