Provisional planning statistics for the third quarter of 2020/21 are now available.
These data provide an overall view of planning activity. Alongside this there is a summary of council performance across the three statutory targets for major development applications, local development applications and enforcement cases as laid out in the Local Government (Performance Indicators and Standards) Order (Northern Ireland) 2015.
The publication is available on the Department for Infrastructure website
The key points from the Northern Ireland Planning Statistics: Third Quarter 2020/21 Statistical Bulletin are:
- Planning activity and processing performance during the first three quarters of 2020/21 were impacted by the restrictions put in place due to the coronavirus pandemic. This should be borne in mind and caution should be taken when interpreting these figures and when making comparisons with other time periods.
- There were 3,602 planning applications received during the third quarter of 2020/21 - an increase of one-tenth on the previous quarter and one-fifth on the same period a year earlier. This comprised 3,574 local and 28 major applications.
- In the third quarter of 2020/21, 2,992 planning applications were decided upon - up almost one-quarter from Q2 2020/21, but down 2% from the same period a year earlier. Decisions were issued on 2,959 local, 32 major and one regionally significant application during the most recent quarter.
- The average processing time for local applications brought to a decision or withdrawal during the first nine months of 2020/21 was 17.8 weeks across all councils. This exceeds the 15 week target and represents an increase of 3.8 weeks from the same period a year earlier. Three of the 11 councils were within the 15 week target after the first three quarters of 2020/21.
- The average processing time for major applications brought to a decision or withdrawal during the first nine months of 2020/21 was 61.8 weeks across all councils. This represents an increase of 7.3 weeks compared with the same period a year earlier and is more than double the 30 week target.
- Across councils 69.2% of enforcement cases were concluded within 39 weeks during the first nine months of 2020/21. This falls just outside the statutory target of 70% and represents a considerable decrease from the rate reported for the same period in 2019/20 (81.9%). Individually, seven of the 11 councils were within target after the first three quarters of 2020/21.