Application procedure for nationally significant infrastructure projects
Application procedure for nationally significant infrastructure projects

The following Planning guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Application procedure for nationally significant infrastructure projects
  • Brexit impact
  • Importance of application preparation
  • Legislation, guidance and policy
  • Pre-application discussions
  • Standard application form
  • Copies of the application
  • Size of documents
  • Scale of plans and drawings
  • Summary
  • more

The Planning Act 2008 (PA 2008) sets out a development consent regime for nationally significant infrastructure projects (NSIPs) in the fields of energy, transport, water, waste water, and waste.

Applications for development consent orders (DCOs) are decided in accordance with National Policy Statements (NPSs), which set out the national policy in relation to NSIPs. See Practice Notes: Permission for nationally significant infrastructure projects and National Policy Statements.

Although the Secretary of State (SoS) bears legal responsibility for the decision, in practice, the government delegates responsibility for accepting and examining applications to the Planning Inspectorate (PINS).

For an outline of the DCO application procedure, see: Development consent order (DCO) application procedure—flowchart.

Brexit impact

This content is likely to be impacted by the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. For further information on the implications of leaving the EU for planning law and practice, see: Brexit—implications for planning law and practice—overview and Practice Note: Brexit—the implications for English and Welsh planning law and practice.

Importance of application preparation

Applications that are poorly organised and presented could be at greater risk of not being accepted for examination.

Once an application has been submitted and accepted, the opportunity to submit any additional or amended information will be constrained within examination procedures. There is limited scope to make 'material' revisions to a scheme during the examination of the application.