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About this book

A major new introduction to the UK planning system. It outlines the evolution and use of the new spatial planning approach which is increasingly adopted at all levels of the UK planning system from European through to the national, regional, sub-regional and local level.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. The Search for Spatial Planning

Abstract
The starting point for any book devoted to spatial planning has to be the land. Planning as an activity that attempts to manage spatial change would not exist in any meaningful way if it was not for contention over the future use and development of the land. Spatial planning is owned by everyone who has a vested interest in the land and what happens to it. I am not only talking here about those fortunate enough to own land — and it is one of fortune, literally, in many cases — but those charged with coordinating and managing different uses of the land. Changes to land affect everyone, from the individual to the neighbourhood, to city-dwellers and those who live in a rural area. You do not have to be a landowner to be affected by land-use changes. In fact, just 10 per cent of the population own 90 per cent of the UK’s land (Government Office for Science 2010), a startling fact in the twenty-first century when we assume that equality, rights of access, wealth redistribution and opportunity for all have come centre stage politically. Landownership in the UK remains a difficult calculation owing to the fragmented form of data available from differing sources (Home 2009).
Mark Tewdwr-Jones

Chapter 2. Spatial Challenges of the Twenty-first Century

Abstract
We saw in Chapter 1 how the planning system lurched from one set of political objectives to another all the way through the twentieth century in response to changing socio-economic and environmental conditions, and as a political tool of governments. Some of those conditions remain issues of concern today, even if there have been subtle variations in their form and governments and ideology have changed significantly over that time. We remain concerned about the provision of new housing, there are consequences of possible increases in population numbers for the provision of essential services such as health and education, but also of water and fuel provision, and there is growing anxiety at the impact of extreme weather conditions on both the land and the activities that occur on it. And of course there are geographical or spatial differences in these activities across the UK. Later in the book we will look at the different political and governmental ways that have been used to deal with these changing conditions and drivers of change, and who has taken responsibility for reacting to the change. But before doing so, it is necessary to consider in detail how the UK is expected to change in the twenty-first century. Only in this way can we then recognize a role for planning in analysing and addressing spatial change.
Mark Tewdwr-Jones

Chapter 3. Spatialization: Coming to Terms with Spatial Planning

Abstract
We saw earlier in the book that the land-use conflicts that emerge in nations have a peculiarly complex effect on sub-national territories as they are addressed by politicians, developers, planners and the public, and discussed and acted upon through a fragmented governmental structure and a highly contentious land-use and spatial planning process. We also saw that the UK, like other countries around the globe, is facing a number of critical challenges ahead in respect of economic growth and competition, population and demographic changes, a shortage of homes, uncertain impacts on the land of climate change and extreme weather conditions, and shortfalls in the provision of infrastructure. This chapter goes on to discuss the ways in which these issues and tensions are, first, recognized and assessed by planners, and secondly, dealt with through land use and spatial planning.
Mark Tewdwr-Jones

Chapter 4. Europeanization, Spatial Planning and Competitiveness

Abstract
In the first three chapters of this book, we set out the contested nature of both land and the spatial planning and land-use management processes charged with gathering intelligence on spatial change and mediating conflicting claims on territory. Chapter 3 highlighted one of the origins of spatial planning since the mid-1980s, compared to older or more traditional forms of planning that were devised in the first half of the twentieth century. This origin was explicitly Europe and emerging debates and ideas within the EU and in European member states. This included an attempt through the 1990s to develop an overview of spatial development, of territory and change across the European continent. This atlas of change, known as the European Spatial Development Perspective (ESDP), and published in 1999, was a catalyst to both pan-European assessments of territorial change and also unleashed new attempts to consider land use and spatial change, at present and in the future, within individual nations and regions but in a fairly incremental way. In Chapter 4, we examine the ways in which evolving academic and governmental debates within the EU have contributed, in part, to ideas of spatial development and spatial thinking. These ideas have centred on the need to achieve balanced development and growth in different parts of Europe, within each member state, and between different cities and regions within nations, and to the achievement of sustainable development. They have also related quite strongly to the belief that spatial planning and land-use management processes have been designed, to some extent, to provide the intelligence and evidence base about spatial change, consider the medium- and long-term trends economically, environmentally and socially, and an integrative means to deal with policy complexity and agency fragmentation.
Mark Tewdwr-Jones

Chapter 5. National Spatial Planning and Political Discretion

Abstract
Chapter 1 set out the ways in which spatial planning and land-use management has been stretched in all directions over its history to accommodate disparate agendas, changing needs and political preferences. Chapter 2 then went on to consider the different drivers of change as they presently affect land and land demand, and the trends likely to occur over the next three decades in certain substantive fields such as economic growth, transport, infrastructure, energy and water supply and the land-use consequences of those trends. Governments have consistently employed land use and spatial planning to intervene in the management of the land and to give shape and direction to change. Indeed, the planning system was first created statutorily by central government over a hundred years ago in order to address key problems relating to housing problems in inner-city locations, the welfare and health of citizens and to avoid overcrowding and high densities. But, interestingly, in the early 1900s Parliament itself did not award itself direct powers to plan. The power of intervention, new state housing development and the regulation of private housing development was handed over to local government, even if Parliament itself had recognized the need for the state to become involved. In the following decades, central government did acquire planning powers of its own but only as a consequence of World War II and the need to rebuild cities, infrastructure and the economy in the national interest. Since 1945, central government has retained these powers, allowing a minister of the crown to set out legislation, make policy and to take decisions on key development projects, while also permitting the monitoring of local authorities in their operation of the planning system. These powers have changed dramatically since the mid-1940s and have ebbed and flowed according to political ideology, the fate of planning more generally, and the changing role of government and the relationships between different arms and layers of the state (Tewdwr-Jones 2002).
Mark Tewdwr-Jones

Chapter 6. Regionalism and Regional Strategies

Abstract
The history of strategic and regional policy has developed over the last 100 years. There are various terms to describe this tier of policy making that sits between central government at the national level and local government at the local level. It has been described as forms of subnational, regional, sub-regional, strategic and supra-local scales. These terms possess one common element: they refer to the scale of policy and decision making that occurs on a wider basis than one individual local authority area, and below the level of the nation as a whole. This could refer to the country sub-divisions of the UK (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland), or to the different divisions of England (into regions — South-East, North-East, North-West, etc.), or into counties and districts.
Mark Tewdwr-Jones

Chapter 7. Sub-Regionalism and City-regions

Abstract
Chapters 5 and 6 demonstrated the problems of attempting to define the extent of territorial management institutionally and what constitutes the national interest and regional autonomy, respectively. These two scales of government and planning relate, in part, to what are perceived to be more top-down attempts to control and fix territories, usually by the central state. While these debates have come and gone politically in England, led by and argued between the two main political parties, the question of our largest cities has also been accompanied by an intense debate on their structure and organization. Some of these cities are regarded as metropolitan, stemming from their historical roles as statutorily defined metropolitan areas, but also in deference to their standing as the largest cities by population in the UK. Outside London, in England these comprise Sheffield, Leeds and Bradford, Newcastle and Sunderland, Birmingham, Manchester and Liverpool. Glasgow in Scotland could also be regarded as a metropolitan area. They are some of the largest urban conglomerations in the UK, but have had a chequered governmental structure. The English examples, until the mid-1980s, possessed a unique institutional arrangement, with a higher strategic metropolitan county authority dealing with cross-metropolitan issues, and a number of metropolitan boroughs at the lower scale within each city dealing with more localized concerns. The Thatcher government abolished London’s metropolitan council, the Greater London Council (GLC), and the six ‘mets’, as they were referred to, in 1986 partly for cost savings but also ideologically, because they were seen as Labour power bases. Higher-tier strategic functions were then transferred to the remaining lower-tier boroughs with the encouragement of rudimentary cross-borough collaboration to deal with matters of more than local interest.
Mark Tewdwr-Jones

Chapter 8. Localism, Local Planning and Reform

Abstract
Chapters 6 and 7 highlighted the form and implications of the move towards regionalism and city regionalism in the UK during the 1990s and 2000s, and there has been a great deal of academic analysis and speculation concerning the various changes to spatial planning and government at those scales in the period since (Amin, Massey and Thrift 2003; Counsell and Haughton 2003; Davoudi and Strange 2009; Allmendinger, 2010; Haughton et al. 2010). But, whereas this focus has tended to occur at the regional and sub-regional or strategic scale, the implications of these changes at the local level within the UK have been discussed from a governance perspective only briefly (Stoker 2004b; Morphet 2010). Similarly, analyses of the trajectories of change, how they relate to past approaches and debates, how and whether they constitute aspects of ‘localism’, and their impacts on planning, have been slow to materialize.
Mark Tewdwr-Jones

Chapter 9. Spatial Planning, Governance and the State

Abstract
The previous chapters demonstrated the ways in which spatial planning has been presented, embedded and appropriated within governance processes across the UK since the mid-1940s. During this time, the UK has witnessed the institutional framework of planning lurch from one-ism to another. Centralism agendas under the welfare-state model of planning were balanced by a failed attempt by the then Labour government at regionalism in the 1960s. In the late 1960s, city-regionalism emerged as a preferential conduit for planning issues but it never took off politically and, as we limped into the 1970s under a Conservative government, centralism agendas were matched by growing localism agendas until the end of the decade. Then, in the Thatcher years of the 1980s, alongside a new role for the market in and over planning, centralism returned in order to create the necessary institutional, political and legal conditions for neo-liberal thinking to infuse planning. As the centralism-market axis started to become democratically unpopular in the late 1980s, particularly with Conservative voters, a U-turn occurred, with localism promoted by the Conservative government and being labelled ‘local choice’. As we headed into the 1990s, and with support switching to Labour again, the regionalism agenda re-emerged and finally was instigated in the latter 1990s and early 2000s as commitments to devolution and new regionalism, but English regionalism was never fully publicly embraced; ironically it was Labour’s own voters who instigated the fall of regionalism in 2004.
Mark Tewdwr-Jones

Chapter 10. Fluid Spatial Planning as Strategic Intelligence

Abstract
Let us conclude this examination of planning and governance by trying to make sense of some of the key trends that have occurred in the framing, reconfiguring and re-presenting of the management of territorial change. This was partly achieved by an examination of some planning history, but also by outlining they key drivers of change which have justified the need for planning’s intervention to resolve spatial disparities. The story of planning is also about managing the contradictory territorial claims stemming from different types of uses and developments on a finite amount of land. We then went on to examine the changing form and use of planning, across time and space, and how it has become increasingly a hostage of the state and of various, sometimes contradictory, political ideologies that have repositioned its modus operandi at different spatial scales. What becomes immediately apparent is that when viewed holistically across the decades and the different types of planning arrangements that different governments have established and sometimes re-established, the raison d’être of planning has shifted dramatically in the wrong direction. This does not only refer to the contentious and turbulent jolts that planning has been subject to as it has been kicked around politically between the central state, the local state, the public sector and private sector, across strategic networks and partnerships, and through the various experiments at the sub-national level. It refers to the fact that the purposes for which planning was created and continues in theory to exist to resolve have been relegated to a subordinate position behind institutionalization and governance for its own sake.
Mark Tewdwr-Jones
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