shutterstock_671045104 (1)

A consultation into the planning system to prevent vital freight developments being stopped in their tracks has been launched by the government.

It said it wanted to ensure the planning needs of the freight and logistics sector were properly and effectively considered.

Last year the department for transport (DfT) published a report setting out a long-term vision for haulage, which committed the government to consult with the industry and understand how it could support the sector and where the system could be tweaked in order to support planning applications.

The government said its “call for evidence” would help underpin new or amended planning policies and ensure sufficient land was allocated for freight-related developments.

It now wants to know what is working well for planning freight and logistics, what does not work well and where improvement could be made.

The DfT said: “Supply chains rely upon multiple modes of freight transport along road, rail, air and maritime routes with transfers between and within modes at ports, airports, rail freight interchanges and at distribution centres and warehouses where freight is disaggregated or consolidated.

“All of these transfer points require the right infrastructure in the right place for the system as a whole to function effectively.”

Logistics UK said the consultation was long awaited and much needed: “Logistics underpins every sector of the UK economy and it is vital that this is reflected in planning by acknowledging the need for logistics to support local communities, developing the necessary infrastructure to keep freight moving, incentivising investment in low and zero carbon operations and creating an environment that supports investment in logistics and warehousing sites,” said Jonathan Walker, head of cities and infrastructure policy.

“In publishing this call for evidence, the government has taken a positive step forward in supporting the future development of our industry.

“We look forward to working with members to submit comprehensive and compelling evidence to the consultation and hope to seek some positive planning reforms as a result.”

You can respond to the consultation here: