Spatial planning (north, south, east and west)

The Regional Planning branch chairs the British Irish Council Collaborative Spatial Planning Work Sector. The Member Administrations include Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales, the Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey. The work sector brings together officials from these Member Administrations who are responsible for national, island and regional development strategies.

What is spatial planning?

Spatial planning goes beyond traditional land use planning to integrate policies for the development and use of land with other policies and programmes that influence both the nature and function of places.  The work sector explores areas where the various administrations might share experiences and identify options to work together to bring practical solutions to spatial planning issues which either straddle administrative boundaries or are similarly faced by the different administrations.  

Spatial Strategies of Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland

Strategic development issues, opportunities and challenges in relation to spatial planning are frequently shared in both the Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland jurisdictions. Consequently the RDS (Regional Development Strategy 2035) and NSS (National Spatial Strategy 2002-2020/National Planning Framework in the Republic of Ireland) include several complementary and interrelated objectives.

To help facilitate practical co-operation, the Department for Infrastructure in Northern Ireland and the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government in Ireland jointly published the 'Framework for Co-operation - Spatial strategies of Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland'.  The Framework, which is a non-statutory document, sets out the approach to be taken both by the Northern Ireland Assembly and the Irish Government in co-operating in the implementation of their respective spatial strategies. 

The Framework was approved by the Northern Ireland Executive on 27 June 2013. 


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