Minister: 50% Reduction In Time For Approval

July 23, 2020 | 5 Comments

The Department of Planning has “moved from 10 weeks to 4-5 weeks for a straightforward planning application to receive planning approval – a 50% reduction,” Minister of Home Affairs Walter Roban said today.

A Government spokesperson said, “During the COVID-19 global pandemic, the Department of Planning has continued to provide key services to the public and industry stakeholders.

“Statistics confirm that there was an uptick in developments presented to the Department of Planning, which indicates interest in the construction sector – and is also an indicator of the health of the economy – which positively impacts everyday life in Bermuda.

“During May and June 2020, a total of 53 planning applications were received and 81 were approved [for non-residential, residential and solar projects] – resulting in a total estimated construction value of $46 million; while a total of 154 building permit applications were received and 114 building permits were issued [for non-residential, residential and solar projects] – resulting in a total estimated construction value of $68 million.

“It should be noted that each application equates to multiple jobs, while building permits speak to the number of shovel ready projects.”

Deputy Premier and Minister of Home Affairs Walter Roban noted, “Last year I spoke of the intent to streamline processes, and this has been achieved. We’ve moved from 10 weeks to 4-5 weeks for a straightforward planning application to receive planning approval – a 50% reduction!

“This can be seen in these recent results, where there are confirmed projects valued at roughly $114 million, which will support jobs as the Government stimulates the economy and gets Bermudians back to work.”

“Learn more about the Department of Planning by visiting their website: www.planning.gov.bm.”

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Comments (5)

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  1. Hmmm says:

    That is huge change, was it due to very few new applications when we entered shelter in place, or because the department is Suddenly and miraculously more efficient.

    I hope it’s not a rush job, to sneak through projects without the proper due diligence and inspection.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      “I hope it’s not a rush job …”

      Bermuda has just raised its debt ceiling, we have to borrow more money just to stay afloat. The world is in the worst recession in living memory. The Government will do anything to get the domestic economy moving again, even throw out planning controls.

  2. Now Ya Nice says:

    That is great news! I will believe it when I see it. The sooner construction is approved the sooner more people can get to work. I remember waiting more than 7 months for a simple set of plans for an addition to be approved. I never understood while it took longer for someone at planning to look over a set of plans than it did for an architect an engineer to draw them! In some cases it has taken looker to approve plans than it did to build the project.

    • wahoo says:

      You are assuming of course that people are going to invest in new construction while we are $3B in debt and chasing out affordable labour.

  3. Triangle Drifter says:

    “Planning is going to reduce the time it takes for plans to be processed”. When have we heard that one before? If you go back over the decades you will find that grand announcement made lots of times. Has it happened yet? Apparently not. Is there any reason to believe that it will happen this time? Nope. The glacial speed at the Planning Department will continue as usual.

    What is the size of the Planning Department these days? Has it been reduced to match the reduction in applications or is it the same size as when construction was booming?

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