The Smart London programme is ready to launch the London Planning Datahub for near real time planning data.
Kingston upon Thames and Ealing councils began to input data earlier this week, and the hub is scheduled to go live for all boroughs to enter data on 16 November, to open up for boroughs to access data from 2 December, and become accessible to the public and third party providers via an API in January.
It is replacing the London Development Database with the automated collection of information on planning applications, with the aim of reducing the burden on local councils and improving the quantity and quality of data available to the public.
A Smart London blogpost said: “This will help us understand what is changing in our cities, and how we can speed up the supply of housing for Londoners, as well as reduce the costs of providing monitoring information for planning authorities across London.”
The hub has been developed over 18 months with financial backing from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government’s Local Digital Fund. It will provide a much wider range of data than the London Development Database, which has only been a register of approved planning applications.
According to the blog, any application for planning development within London will have to use a different form, with new questions relating to environmental information, floor area, infrastructure requirements and ownership information. This is aimed at providing an understanding of changes in the city and to support planning for future needs
“We’ll be closely monitoring the data entering our systems to track its quality and we have built in technical checks to avoid poor quality data wherever possible,” the blog said. “We will work with local authorities and applicants to continually refine these systems, to make sure we get the best quality data possible.”
Image by Mike McBey, CC BY 2.0