Responsibilities of the Borough Planning team include, but are not limited to, coordinating multi-modal representations to all planning applications referred to TfL and local plans and leading negotiations and involvement on section 106 and section 278 agreements.

Planned developments that are of strategic importance are referred to the Mayor of London. They are known as referable planning applications.

These are automatically submitted to BP by either the Greater London Authority (GLA) or the local planning authority (LPA). BP advises on what effects these planning applications are likely to have on the transport network in London.

BP is responsible for:

  • Leading TfL's pre-application advice service
  • Reviewing of Transport Assessments (TAs)
  • Coordinating TfL multi-modal representations on all planning applications referred to TfL and the GLA
  • Leading negotiations on section 106 agreements and planning conditions and agreeing mitigation on behalf of TfL
  • Leading TfL's involvement on section 278 agreements and other highways agreements
  • Monitoring receipt of contributions and delivery or discharge of planning conditions and obligations relevant to TfL
  • Leading on the Mayor's Crossrail standard charge regime, the Mayor's Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and responding to borough CIL and Infrastructure Delivery Plans
  • Co-ordinating TfL multi-modal representations on Local Plans (formerly LDF's) and area-based policy such as Area Action Plans (AAP) and Supplementary Planning Documents (SPD)
  • TfL's engagement in the neighbourhood planning process

It is very important that BP is the central point of contact at TfL to ensure that a comprehensive, coordinated response is obtained.

Non-referable planning applications

BP is also responsible for coordinating TfL's response to LPAs for all other planning applications where TfL has an interest.

These applications are 'non-referable' ie they do not need to be referred to the Mayor of London.

Under the Town and Country (Development Management Procedure) (England) Order 2010, TfL, as the highway authority for the Transport for London Road Network (TLRN), must be consulted on planning applications where LPAs deem proposals fall under any of the following categories:

  • Development likely to result in a material increase in the volume - or a material change in the character - of traffic entering or leaving a classified road or proposed highway
  • Development likely to prejudice the improvement or construction of a classified road or proposed highway
  • Development involving either: The formation, laying out or alteration of any means of access to a highway (other than a trunk road); or: The construction of a highway or private means of access to premises affording access to a road in relation to which a toll order is in force
  • Development which consist of or included the laying out or construction of a new street

Find out more about this legislation

In addition, TfL has a duty under the Traffic Management Act (2004) to ensure that any development does not have an adverse impact on the Strategic Road Network (SRN). Any applications which are located on the SRN, and fall within the criteria listed above, should also be sent to BP for consultation.

TfL, as well as being a transport operator, is also a property and landowner. Therefore, if proposed developments affect TfL property or other infrastructure eg London Underground tunnels or materially affects surface transport, rail operations, services and infrastructure or require new transport provision, BP must also be consulted.

Transport assessment best practice

The TfL transport assessment best practice guidance (TABPG) was first issued in 2006 and updated in 2010. BP has now updated the guidance to reflect changes to national policy, including the adoption of the National Planning Policy Framework and overall government objective to streamline the planning process and stimulate the economy. The update also reflects internal changes within TfL and expands the guidance so that it comprehensively sets out the role of and services offered by the BP team.

The guidance is now contained in webpages. This is designed to make the guidance more user-friendly, relevant and accessible - easier to update to reflect changes to policy, best practice, and internal structure and processes. Due to the technical nature of some elements of this document and the evolving policy environment, the guidance will be periodically updated.

TfL's TABPG is designed to assist those submitting planning applications for developments in London where a transport assessment (TA) is required. It is intended to ensure that all requirements of TfL are fulfilled such that applications can be reviewed and assessed comprehensively.

A comprehensive TA will be required for schemes that are referred to the Mayor, unless otherwise agreed with TfL. For non-referable applications, a TA may also be required and TfL advises applicants to carefully consider the need for a TA when preparing planning applications in consultation with the local planning authority and TfL.

The Department for Transport (DfT) in 2007 produced a guidance document on the transport assessment process for local authorities and developers. This document has been used in the preparation of TfL's guidance. Appendix B of the DfT guidance sets out indicative thresholds for the preparation of TAs.

TfL suggests the use of this guidance but sometimes a greater level of analysis is necessary. In such circumstances the applicants are requested to contact TfL through the pre-application process to determine the level of assessment required.