National Planning Framework 4 – extension to Call for Ideas deadline

The Scottish Government’s Planning and Architecture Division explains its decision to extend the National Planning Framework 4 Call for Ideas deadline until 30 April.

National Planning Framework 4 – extension to Call for Ideas deadline

We are extending the closing date for our National Planning Framework 4 Call for Ideas from 31 March to 30 April. This applies to all aspects of the Call for Ideas, including the housing technical discussion paper and the invitation to submit projects for consideration as national developments. We hope this extension will help you to still get involved during the difficult times and disruption caused by the COVID-19 outbreak. We explain how you can do that below.

Further information and resources to help you participate are available on our website, and in particular from the ‘resources’ and ‘get involved’ pages. You will find information on themes, suggested questions to get you thinking, and more detailed information sheets on particular policy topics, as well as on regional spatial strategies and national developments. Please browse the materials and let us know if you need clarification on anything.

We are happy to take your comments in whatever form suits you best, whether a couple of sentences about a particular theme, or a more detailed submission covering a number of issues. All we ask is that you also complete a respondent information form (also available on the Transforming Planning site) and submit it with your response to

Some of you have been asking if the current situation with COVID-19 will impact on the NPF4 timetable.   At present we are still on track to deliver a consultation draft in September 2020. We will let stakeholders know if there is any change to that timescale.

Scotplan 2050 roadshow

We would like to thank all those that participated in our Scotplan 2050 roadshow workshops and drop-in sessions. Your time was very much appreciated, and we have had a fantastic variety and depth of discussions on a range of topics. We will be collating all the postcards and maps and aim to make those available soon.

We are really disappointed to have had to cancel events in the final 7 locations and apologise to all those that were signed up to come along and speak to us. But you don’t need to miss out!   Whilst it’s not as good as discussing with others at an event, you can carry out the workshop exercises at home.   Here’s how to do it:

  1. Watch this short (10 minute) powerpoint which provides the context to NPF4.
  2. Think about what you want NPF4 to deliver. Use our 2050 postcards to note down what you would like to see happen, remembering to describe why you want these things to happen and who are best placed to deliver them. Think about the 5 themes of climate change, people, work, place, and delivery. If you need some help to get started, look at the 5 questions. But don’t let these limit you – they are just a prompt. Think big!
  3. Think about the ideas and themes that you raised in your postcards and use the doodle map and coloured pens to draw where ideas might happen.
  4. Submit your ideas to us at You can complete the postcards in word and send to us. With the maps, you may wish to print and then send photos back to us. Or your phone may have annotation functions. We’re sorry that this is not ideal, but as we’re not in our own office, we’re unable to send out hard copies for you to annotate.

Please note that the postcards and maps will be treated slightly differently to comments formally submitted through the call for ideas. If submitting postcards and annotated maps, they will be treated as if you were at a workshop – there is no need to complete a respondent information form – they are all treated anonymously, be logged, and will help inform development of a draft NPF4. Should you wish to log a formal written response, please complete a respondent information form. Both will be used to inform drafting, but formal responses will also be written up and analysed by a consultant and published online.  

We hope that you can still manage to participate in this early engagement period, and that the additional month will help. But we also understand if you are unable to. Please rest assured that this is the early engagement phase, and there will be plenty of opportunities to get involved at other stages, including the formal consultation period on the draft NPF4 in the autumn.

Please send any queries to us at You may also wish to follow us on twitter @ScotGovPlanning #scotplan

Thanks again for supporting this important work towards Scotland’s future development.

  • Read all of our articles relating to COVID-19 here.
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