Sat, 03 Dec 2022

Provisional planning statistics for the first quarter of 2022/23 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, along with other statistics of interest such as application approval rates.

The publication is available on the Department for Infrastructure website.

Key points:

The key points from the Northern Ireland Planning Statistics: First Quarter 2022/23 Statistical Bulletin are:

  • Planning activity and processing performance during 2020/21 and 2021/22 were impacted by the restrictions put in place due to the coronavirus pandemic. Also, during January and February of 2022 the Planning Portal was inaccessible for a period of time. These factors should be borne in mind and caution taken when interpreting figures and when making comparisons with other time periods.
  • There were 3,061 planning applications received during the first quarter of 2022/23; a decrease of over three percent on the previous quarter and down by nearly twenty-three percent on the same period a year earlier. This comprised of 3,027 local and 34 major applications.
  • In the first quarter of 2022/23, 3,153 planning applications were decided upon; up by almost seven percent from the previous quarter but down by nearly nine percent from the same period a year earlier. Decisions were issued on 3,121 local and 32 major applications during the most recent quarter.
  • The average processing time for local applications brought to a decision or withdrawal during the first three months of 2022/23 was 16.6 weeks across all councils. This exceeds the 15 week target and represents an increase of 0.8 weeks from the same period a year earlier. Four of the 11 councils were within the 15 week target after the first three months of 2022/23.
  • The average processing time for major applications brought to a decision or withdrawal during the first three months of 2022/23 was 51.3 weeks across all councils. This represents a decrease of 2.3 weeks compared with the same period a year earlier but is still considerably higher than the 30 week target.
  • Across councils 70.3% of enforcement cases were concluded within 39 weeks during the first three months of 2022/23. This meets the statutory target of 70% but represents a decrease from the rate reported for the same period in 2021/22 (71.7%). Eight of the 11 councils were within target after the first three months of 2022/23.

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