A Planning Obligation is a legal agreement between the planning authority, the developer and other interested parties. By law they must be:
- necessary to make the development acceptable in planning terms
- directly related to the development
- fairly and reasonably related in scale and kind to the development
They may involve restrictions or obligations on the developer to secure planning permission. For example, the developer of a large housing site may make a contribution to build a new classroom at the local school.
An obligation cannot require the developer to solve an existing problem but it can ask for a contribution if the development will make it worse.
Development cannot go ahead unless the developer has fulfilled Planning Obligations either by submitting a Unilateral Undertaking or entering into a S106 Agreement with us.
To ensure we negotiate Planning Obligations in a consistent and transparent way, we have a Planning Obligations Strategy, with guidance on when and how we will enter into planning obligations and what we expect developers to provide.
The Section 106 agreement specifies when payments or in kind contributions will be made. The trigger varies between developments and often relates to the commencement date or specific occupancy rates.