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05/12/17 09:30

Planning application decision times published

An Official Statistics Publication for Scotland

Statistics on quarterly planning performance in Scotland have been released today by Scotland’s Chief Statistician. These detail the number of planning applications decided across Scotland and average decision times for most types of application including housing and business and industry.

The overall average decision time for all local applications (8.8 weeks for 6,967 applications) has decreased for the second consecutive quarter and is the quickest average time for any quarter since the start of this data collection in 2012/13.  In addition, there were 379 local developments decided that had processing agreements in place, with 309 (82 per cent) of these meeting agreed timescales.


The overall average decision time for all major developments (39.8 weeks for 55 applications) was over seven weeks slower than the previous quarter but only slower by four days than quarter one in 2016/17. In addition, there were 26 major applications decided that were subject to processing agreements with 18 (69 per cent) of these meeting agreed timescales.

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Key Findings for Quarter 1 (April to June) of 2017/18:

The overall average decision time for all local applications has decreased for the second consecutive quarter and is the quickest average time for any quarter since the start of this data collection in 2012/13.

  • For applications subject to average time calculations and excluding two pre 3rd-August 2009 legacy cases there were 6,967 decisions made on local applications during quarter one of 2017/18. The overall average decision time for these local developments was 8.8 weeks, quicker than both the previous quarter (9.3 weeks) and the same quarter in 2016/17 (8.9 weeks). It was the quickest average time for any quarter since the start of this data collection in 2012/13.
  • For quarter one in 2017/18 the percentage of local development decisions made in less than two months was 77.6 per cent, up from 73.6 per cent in the previous quarter but slightly lower than the equivalent quarter one percentage in 2016/17 (78.1 per cent).
  • In addition, there were 379 local developments decided in the first quarter of 2017/18 that had processing agreements in place, with 309 (82 per cent) of these meeting agreed timescales.

The average decision time for local housing developments was the quickest average time for any quarter since the start of this data collection in 2012/13.

          • There were 1,218 decisions made on local housing applications during quarter one of 2017/18. The average decision time for these local housing developments was 12.2 weeks, quicker by more than four days compared to the previous quarter (12.8 weeks) and the quickest average time for quarter one since the start of this data collection in 2012/13.
          • In addition, there were 156 local housing applications that were subject to processing agreements with 128 (82 per cent) of these meeting agreed timescales.
          • The overall average decision time for all major developments was over seven weeks slower than the previous quarter but only slower by four days than quarter one in 2016/17.

The average decision time for the 55 major applications with decisions in quarter one of 2017/18 was 39.8 weeks, more than seven weeks slower than the previous quarter (32.6 weeks) but less than a week slower than the equivalent quarter one figure in 2016/17 (39.3 weeks).

        • The average time has been influenced by a number of lengthier decision times including five that each took longer than two years. More than 72 per cent of the 55 major development applications were decided in a time that was quicker than the average.
        • In addition, there were 26 major applications that were subject to processing agreements with 18 (69 per cent) of these meeting agreed timescales.

The average decision time for major housing developments was quicker by over a week compared to the previous quarter and quicker by just over four weeks than the quarter one figure for 2016/17.

  • There were 30 decisions made on major housing developments decided during quarter one of 2017/18. The average decision time for these major housing developments was 44.2 weeks, quicker by more than a week compared to the previous quarter (45.6 weeks) and by more than four weeks than the quarter one figure for 2016/17 (48.3 weeks).
  • In addition, there were 9 major housing applications that were subject to processing agreements with 5 (55 per cent) of these meeting agreed timescales.

The overall rate of approvals for all types of application was 94.1 per cent in the period April to June 2017, a slight decrease from the previous quarter (94.2 per cent), but a slight increase from quarter one in 2016/17 (94.0 per cent).

The figures released today were produced in accordance with professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

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