Planning Obligations, also known as Section 106 agreements (based on that section of the 1990 Town & Countryside Planning Act), or Unilateral Undertakings (UUs) are legal agreements that developers sign which contain obligations/covenants designed to mitigate the negative effects of a development which would otherwise be unacceptable in planning terms. These can be non-financial and/or financial commitments.
They can be used to:
Prescribe what type of development takes place, by requiring a certain amount of affordable housing in a residential project, for example; or obtain contributions towards infrastructure from a developer in order to lessen a project’s impact, or to compensate for loss or damage.
Regulations state that a Planning Obligation can only be considered as a reason for granting planning permission if it is:
- necessary to make a development acceptable in planning terms;
- directly related to the development; and
- reasonably related to a development in terms of scale and type.