North Ayrshire Council was announced as a winner in the Scottish Awards for Quality in Planning 2017 yesterday for the council’s use of the town centre audit function of the Understanding Scottish Places town data tool.

North Ayrshire Council’s submission described how the council had worked with Scotland’s Towns Partnership and EKOS to produce town centre audits as part of its new Local Development Plan.

The submission stated that the audits had supported strategic planning, funding bids and specific projects in a number of ways:

“This approach was innovative for STP, EKOS and NAC as it covered all town centres; and allowed partners to frame a strategic overview of all centres, to support a network approach, and recognise the value of a network in maximising town centres as regional and local economic drivers. The work provides a framework for monitoring/evidence gathering, auditing leading to a well-informed strategic approach, and allowing a range of partners to deliver on that strategy”.

You can read more about USP’s Your Town Audits here.

The Scottish Awards for Quality in Planning are one of the Scottish Government’s most prestigious awards. They celebrate achievements in planning, from the detail of processing to the bigger picture of creating places which will become the legacy of professionalism.

You can read more about the awards and the winning entries at the Scottish Government’s Planning and Architecture blog here.

About Understanding Scottish Places

The Understanding Scottish Places platform, first launched in 2015, offers a mechanism for understanding the similarity of places across Scotland. Deliberately designed to avoid a simplistic ranking of places as better or worse, USP focuses on the shared characteristics of towns.

Understanding Scottish Places has been developed by a consortium of organisations commissioned by the Scottish Government and led by the Carnegie UK Trust.

The consortium includes Scotland’s Towns Partnership (STP), the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES), and the University of Stirling.

The USP platform is the key resource in a suite of materials provided by Scotland’s Towns Partnership (STP).

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