Industry collaborates on revised Design Review guidance

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New guidelines aimed at ensuring the consistency and quality of advice offered by design review panels across the UK have been published by the Cabe team at the Design Council in collaboration with the Landscape Institute, the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) and the Royal Institute of Architects (RIBA). Welcoming the launch of the revised guidance; Design Review, Principles and Practice RIBA President Angela Brady said: “Design review is a hugely valuable tool, which has had a proven track record of improving the quality of schemes.”

The publication of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) in 2012 re-iterated and reinforced the role of Design Review in ensuring high standards of design.

Explained RIBA President Angela Brady: “The [design] process has been strengthened significantly by its inclusion within the NPPF, so it is now more important than ever that panels are administered in the most effective, professional and consistent way possible. The revised guidance is an important step in achieving this and is a great example of the collaborative, cross-sector guidance that will be needed to ensure delivery of the NPPF.”

Key changes included in the new Design Review guidance include:

  • A revision of the 10 principles of design review, which are now firmly the focus of the document – as is the crucial definition of good design review.
  • The removal of the old principle 9 (focused on outcomes for people) and principle 10 (focused on improving quality) which have been replaced with ‘Multidisciplinary’ and ‘Transparent’.
  • A re-structuring of the document to focus on outlining the principles that should constitute core planning guidance on Design Review, followed by clear, concise and accessible advice on how to deliver them
  • The role of design review in the planning system has been updated in light of the NPPF and the importance attached to the use of design review arrangements at a local and national level

John Mathers, Chief Executive of the Design Council, commented: “Following its inclusion in the NPPF, Design Review is now a key part of the planning process, and is essential to the delivery of quality places.”