Capital Land - Great Stall East Site - Red line

Capital Land purchase 212-acre site at Swindon’s New Eastern Villages development


Swindon-based Capital Land has completed the purchase of 212 acres of land at New Eastern Villages (NEV) Great Stall East, a significant step in the largest and most important urban regeneration development in the UK.

The next round of detailed planning is in progress and plans are for work to commence on the site in 2022. The Great Stall East development will be approximately 20% of the NEV development and is set to include 1,550 homes, a secondary school, a park and ride, and a sports hub.

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Digital Planning Transformation


Future Cities Catapult, a government supported centre for the advancement of smart cities, have been researching the planning industry and looking for ways to digitalise the whole process to overcome the current flaws of a problematic system. They have identified areas of needed improvement throughout the planning process from pre-application and submission right through to the start of construction and completion. Early this week (5th February 2019) they launched a prototype planning tool to address problems in the post-permission phase of the planning application process. The report that accompanies the release of this prototype tool, Digitising the Planning System Part 3: The Post-Permission Planning Process sets out their findings in brief and gives an overview of how the new tool, PLANtraq, will be used.

The step towards bringing the planning system into the digital age is the first of many with digital tools such as PLANtraq. It is an essential step towards creating a more dynamic and efficient planning system. If tools such as this are to be implemented correctly and effectively the individuals using them also need to bring their thinking into the 21st century. The data being inputted and interpreted will have fundamentally not changed meaning there is still the question around how the planning system is used by individuals within local planning authorities in order to achieve the housing numbers the UK needs. It is essential the individuals within decision making roles of local planning authorities do not diffuse responsibility to the algorithms in the long run and ultimately remain/become competently in control of an integral system of society.

To find out more about the project visit the Future Cities Website here:

Image: Screenshot from Digitising the Planning System report

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UKs Need For Housing


An article published by The Resolution Foundation, an independent think tank, looks in more depth at recent ONS household figures suggesting that the data could be interpreted differently to reflect a truer picture of the UK housing market. They suggest switching attention from purely just the household to looking at the number of dwellings available per family. In short they conclude “in the first instance it is hard to escape the conclusion that as a country we have not built enough homes to keep up with population trends over the last 25 years.” The think tank also goes on to point out that if the UK was to meet the Government’s house building target of 300,000 new units a year it would take until 2028 to reach a level where housing was previously aligned with needs.

In short the targets for house building are not being met and the real need for housing within the UK will continue to worsen. The first chock hold on the UK’s housing being built is at local planning authority level; the UK’s planning system needs to have a serious shape up if the UK’s housing needs are to be achieved.

Read the full article here: 

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Capital Land Property Group