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Date: 16/12/2009

The Planning Officers Society is among the groups representing the property industry, town planners and Government agencies that have come together in a project designed to improve councillors and planners understanding of the economics of development in a government-backed project announced in the pre-Budget report by Alistair Darling MP on 9th December 2009.

The project enjoys the support of the department for Communities and Local Government and will be carried out by specialist consultants Roger Tym and Partners.

The project reflects growing concern that a failure to understand issues affecting viability is inhibiting beneficial development.  

The study will identify who requires what kind of training, looking at what currently exists and how additional training could be provided most cost effectively.

It is felt that sounder decision making process can be encouraged by providing professional planners, elected councillors and other relevant stakeholders with a better understanding of:

  • the different attitudes developers have towards risk and return
  • factors that impact the viability of individual developments

The economic recession and constraints on public spending will force a greater focus on joint working between developers and councils to achieve development which is economically viable while still meeting the wider needs of the community.

Phil Kirby, Immediate Past President of POS, said This certainly is a worthwhile and timely project and one that POS is pleased to fully support. The audience could be twofold - planning officers who will require a more technical insight, and local authority members providing a general level of understanding how development economics works.


1. The sponsoring bodies are the British Property Federation, Planning Advisory Service, Royal Town Planning Institute, Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, British Urban Regeneration Association, Planning Officers Society, the Homes and Communities Agency Academy, the Homes and Communities Advisory Team for Large Applications, the Planning Inspectorate.


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