Residents across the north-east will get the chance to have their say on future developments through an online consultation.
Aberdeenshire Council will be seeking the public views on its proposed Local Development Plan 2020.
The local authority is launching an eight-week online consultation on May 25.
Usually, the plan is printed out and physical copies of the documents made available for inspection at libraries or planning offices.
But due to social distancing measures, it will now be showcased online.
Head of Planning, Paul Macari, told councillors that in place of nine drop-in events, the council is now proposing to engage with stakeholders, including community councils, by way of electronic means such as virtual drop-ins, Q&A sessions and a 24-hour virtual ‘live chat’ platform.
Additional e-newsletter updates will be published in the lead up to and during the consultation period, with social media platforms being used to widely publicise the Proposed LDP and promote the production of three short films on the plan-making process.
Those who do not use or have limited access to online facilities can still fully participate in the consultation process.
To make a written response, you can write to the: Planning Policy Team, Infrastructure Services, Aberdeenshire Council, Woodhill House, Westburn Road, Aberdeen, AB165GB.
Infrastructure Services Committee chairman Councillor Peter Argyle said: “Given normal circumstances, we wouldn’t consider doing a solely electronic consultation on a matter of such importance as this.
“However, it is time-critical and we do need to get this consultation completed so we can everything off to the Reporter’s Unit and get through to the examination in public.
“I commend the service for the thought and work that has gone into the paper – it has been very thorough – and we really don’t have a huge amount of choice in this.
“Clearly it will be challenging for people without access to the internet or access to a computer and that is something we will be addressing as best we can.
Aberdeenshire Council formally agreed its Proposed LDP on March 5 and will submit its proposals to Scottish Ministers for examination later this year, following consideration of representations received during the consultation period.
New housing opportunities have been identified across Aberdeenshire including sites at Banchory, Echt, Fetterangus, Fyvie, Gourdon, Inverurie, Newburgh, Pitmedden, St Combs and Turriff among others.
The Proposed LDP and supporting documents will be published online on 25 May.
As part of the public consultation, three short films are available on Aberdeenshire Council’s YouTube channel by clicking on the following links:
The LDP Process: https://bit.ly/LDP-makingprocess
The Proposed LDP: https://bit.ly/PLDP2020
Public Engagement: https://bit.ly/PLDP2020consultation