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March 13, 2007

English Land Use Database under review

Kingston University researcher Tony Vickers, who lectures at the School of Surveying on Green Taxes, is to have a major role in a study for English Partnerships (EP - the UK's urban regeneration agency) that a multi-disciplinary team at Kingston will undertake this summer into the future of the National Land Use Database (NLUD) in England.

Kingston was awarded the contract after a competitive tender exercise, which happened to run concurrently with the final legislative stages of the European INSPIRE Directive. INSPIRE, which deals with 'joining up' the spatial datasets of the 25 EU Member States - including land use data - achieved co-decision after year-long negotiations in which the policy and institutional issues around geodata dominated. Vickers has gained insight into these issues through his Landvaluescape research at Kingston, where he also lectures in Geospatial Data Policy.

Vickers covered the first public awareness raising INSPIRE event in London on 8th March, for the magazine GIS Professional, during the week when EP's formal letter offering the NLUD contract arrived with his PhD supervisor at Kingston, the Project Director Professor Sarah Sayce. Slides of the presentations at the event (organised by the Association for Geographic Information and co-sponsored by the Intragovernmental Group for GI and the Local Government Association) will shortly be available on the AGI website http://www.agi.org.uk

The NLUD Study will shortly have its own website hosted by Kingston. Key stakeholders in NLUD are Local Planning Authorities from which EP obtains data on Previously Developed Land (PDL). Tony Vickers is himself a local councillor in West Berkshire and Chair of the AGI's Local Government Special Interest Group.

EP expect any development of the NLUD-PDL system recommended by the Kingston study, which has helped Government monitor urban housing renewal since 1999, to be funded from a new tax on development: the Planning Gain Supplement (PGS). Chancellor (Finance Minister) Gordon Brown - expected to be UK Prime Minister before the NLUD Study reports in August - will announce details of PGS in his Budget Speech on 21 March.

Posted by Tony Vickers at March 13, 2007 3:40 PM

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