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Warrington Borough Council is gearing up for the introduction of a new on-line planning system, which will bring significant improvements for applicants, residents and staff.
The current system has limitations, and it can be difficult for the public and consultees to find the level of information that they are looking for.
With the launch of the new system, people will find it far easier to access a range of planning information online and monitor the progress of applications, on a self-serve basis.
It will also bring benefits to the council’s planning team, improving workflow and monitoring of applications and allowing officers to work remotely more efficiently.
The council has been working closely with the software providers for a number of months, to ensure the new system meets Warrington’s requirements. With this work almost completed, the system is due to go live on Wednesday 8 June.
In preparation for this, a large amount of data needs to be transferred to the new system, which means the council will be unable to input any new information into the existing on-line system from Thursday 19 May until the new system goes live.
The public can continue to view existing records online, but no new records will be added during this period. This includes new applications and any consultation responses received.
However, the planning team will still be able to issue decisions, and any representations received in this period will be sent directly to the case officer for consideration and will be referred to in their recommendation reports.
All new information - including responses, reports and decisions - will be uploaded to the new system once it goes live.
Warrington Borough Council’s cabinet member for environment, housing and public protection, Cllr Hitesh Patel, said: “Our new online planning system will make a real difference to applicants and agents, providing a more accessible, efficient and up-to-date experience which is far easier to navigate.
“The launch of this system form part of our wider work to improve our planning service, including increasing opportunities for self-serve and giving our staff the tools and support they need to respond to the significant increase in the number of applications we have seen in recent years.
“There will be some short-term disruption, as we complete the transfer from our existing on-line system over to the new system. I would like to thank everyone in advance for their patience while this work is carried out.”