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Draft planning guidance: sustainable & active travel, safeguarding local facilities, visitor experience – closed

Update: this consultation has now closed

Share your views on new draft planning guidance to help us ensure that our planning policies are clearer and easier for you to use and apply.

This consultation refers to:

Keeping our Planning Guidance up to date

Our National Park Local Development Plan 2017-21 outlines policies to help ensure that we see the right development in the right place. The timescale for our next plan has been revised to closely align it and maximise opportunities within the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019. We will shortly begin the process of preparing a new Local Development Plan but, until this is in place, we have developed new guidance to help keep the current plan up to date and make it even easier to use and understand.

Two new draft guidance documents have been developed to provide clarity on requirements around sustainable and active travel and our policies to help safeguard facilities in rural areas. We are also proposing updates to our existing guidance on visitor experience.

These documents are designed to provide clarity on how to interpret and apply planning policies when considering a development proposal in the National Park.

The policy guidance aims to help maintain the facilities and infrastructure necessary for National Park residents to live locally, while also providing appropriate services for everyone to enjoy this special place in a way that supports our local environment and Scotland’s Net Zero targets.

Once finalised, this guidance will help inform planning decisions.

What do the updates cover?

The new guidance covers areas such as what our Local Development Plan policies mean by providing ‘positive contributions’ for active and sustainable travel; what transport assessments are required when making a planning application; change of use of existing businesses to help safeguard essential facilities and services for National Park communities; best practice design and layouts for car parks in rural locations, where they should be sited and what we mean by ‘small-scale car parks’.

Respond to the consultation

This consultation has now closed for responses. Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to share their views on the draft guidance. These will now be reviewed.

If you have any questions about the guidance or this consultation, please get in touch with us at


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