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RTPI e-Planning Conference 2010 – have your say

by on September 22, 2009

Hello all,
I’ve been asked to chair next year’s RTPI e-Planning Conference and as a result I’m now drawing up the programme. On the list will be e-Consultation, 1App and the relaunched, redesigned and reinvented Planning Portal.
But as usual, I like to share the work/love/blame (take your pick) around and I would like to ask you folks what you think we should all be talking about or indeed who we should be hearing from?
This is not a Portal party so feel free to nominate from the wider e-planning world.
I’m running late on this so answers ASAP please.

  1. An old chestnut of mine as you may remember, but one question for discussion could be the need for and means of achieving a wider e-planning-aid service.

  2. PortalDirector permalink

    Hi Ian,
    what do you envisage.

  3. Most enquiries to my e-service seek fairly simple answers to straightforward planning questions. Some are a little more challenging and keep me on my toes. Despite the information being online ‘somewhere’ they may find it difficult to find (or understand) or need some assessment in relation to their particular circumstances.

    Perhaps the central email point through the portal could be expanded from which questions are then diverted to an online ‘team’ of respondents. There may be some specialists involved, but the aim would be to disperse questions to planners willing to provide an email response. This could count toward CPD and if enough planners get involved the overall level of individual committment could be quite low. Equally those who are currently seeking new posts might find it a useful way to keep their hand in.
    Some standard responses (information sheets) could be developed for the regular questions.
    I suggest this would be an element of the PlanningAid service, but might also be tied in to the RICS P & D group as well.
    Just a thought.

  4. Liam Hay permalink

    Sometimes there seems to be no sense of urgency in the negotiating and progressing of planning applications.

    Many contracts and many jobs for construction workers are put in jeopardy by the delays in reaching a decisions by planning departments where the reason given is lack of staff.

    If the infamous ‘deemed refusal’ were to be a ‘deemed consent’ it could certainly help to move the backlog of applications which build up on the planners desks.

    Many contractors and developers are of this opinion as some applicationd take years to resolve.

  5. Ken Usman-Smith permalink

    The need to build on the ‘old’ or the ‘new’ governments future plans that are dismantling the traditional silos of planning Authorities to support efficiency need discussion as ICT will be core to ant governmants plans in 2010 onwards.
    Investing in councils by possibly reviewing the HPDG to create PENDLETON 2 would be welcome. Capital investments and running costs may better drive cross boundary working if we can tap into funding with outcomes and outputs required to justify that route. And it would set off hares racing at the conference:
    Because the purpose of business is to create and keep a customer, the business enterprise has two-and only two–basic functions: marketing and innovation. Marketing and innovation produce results; all the rest are costs. Peter Drucker

    Discussion Areas:
    The focus needs to shift to the Portals offering of an upload scanned plans to download them service so we can have an easy way of embedding tokens in plans and Authorities can then solve the inability to effectively use plans on web sites.

    The use of EDRMS to scan all paper and how thats been used to create a Return on Investment that is measurable in floor space, staff effectiveness and faster turnaround.

    The use of BPR to transform what we do and if there is an emerging natuional blueprint for good and bad practice and funding such as the LSC BIT programme and who has used it and the benefits.

    The experiences of LPA and private sector organisations in partnership to share ICT and experticse to create efficienies of scale with the problems and advantages needs discussion.

    Social Computing and web2.00 as well as Knowledge base developments needs a discussion as its impacting on daily operations not least through e-consulations and developing iuse of blogs and social computing technologies.

    The interface between WEB, DATA BASE, GIS and EDRMS to cxreate the workflow we all need to implement to survive needs disussion:

    Knowledge is of two kinds: We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find INFORMATION about it.
    Samuel Johnson

  6. Ken Usman-Smith permalink

    OK lets be ambitious and face the fact that we need to think ‘cheap’ when we see what resources the LPA has now and will have in the future.

    The planning fee rarely covers the work involved in determining it. And e-planning may save the applicant printing and postage costs but its costing the LPA a fortune!

    The high quality full colour CAD developed submitted A0 plans looks great on line. The glossy brochures full of colour photos impress the client.

    They are literally costing the earth for the LPA!

    Just because you can lodge an impressive piece of art your client may love, does not mean the carbon footprint and crippling financial cost to the Local Authority are justified. It costs the LPA a fortune to print in colour, especially when colour printings being blocked to save money corporately.

    And naming conventions need a British Standard as PARSOL and BURA proposed long ago. And long names on documents submitted on line crash web sites, as do massive file sizes.

    Its a pipe the customer is at the other end of, and the UK pipe is narrow so it does not matter how good the customer of LPA connection is. if its too big to view why use it, whats wrong with A3 maximoms and greyscale with hatched keys avoiding colour?

    E does NOT mean more cost effective!!!! IT MEANS EXPENSIVE when you are facing and ICT bill that is gowing daily.

    We may one day achieve the real efficiency savings when work flow can be added and EDRMS kicks in, but we are still at the infrastructure development stage and will not ‘turn the curve’ on performance unless and until Government recognise this.

    Thats better, I am fully behind new technology, it is after all 80% of what I do. What I do not like is the failure to surface and engage with its limitations!

Please give us your feedback but we won’t publish any comments that are not constructive or that criticise any individual, any named business or any local authority. Please note, all comments will be moderated before being published.

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