Donegal Online Planning Services
Topic of the practice
Good Practice Information
Donegal Online Planning Services was designed as another channel to provide spatial planning information to the public, in a manner that replicated what is available “over-the-counter”.
The process involved replicating the 3 main elements of our internal planning systems to the web environment. The 3 elements are:1) Data search engine 2) Scanned documentation 3) GIS
The approach adopted was a modular one whereby the development started with the database search. The scanned documents were added as a second module and webGIS as the final module. This simplified the process with each module enhancing the previous module.
Donegal Online Planning Service is an e-Government service which allows the citizens of Donegal to fully access up to date spatial planning information in a transparent and accessible manner. All information relating to a planning application is published online as another channel of accessibility,
such as applicant details, all related scanned documentation (from site layout maps, application design to managers reports), and a geographic search using webGIS maps and orthophotography. The service has grown into a planning portal for County Donegal where all planning related information is available in one location: Development plan maps, Planning process guidelines, Legislation links, FAQ’s and contact details.
DCC also developed a preplanning GIS application, where users can interrogate planning policies and control by digitising a specific site on interactive webGIS maps. This system uses the power of spatial analysis techniques to generate a geographically specific report for the customer, with links/details to relevant planning policies, zones, surrounding application and locational information.
Evidence of success
SQL Data base search (average monthly hits): 35000 ('04) – 103000 ('07) • Scanned Documents accessed online: 6700 ('04) – 25000 ('07) • WebGIS searches: 22500 ('04) – 158000 ('07) •“between the introduction of the integrated planning system and the development of an application screening process, output per person in Planning increased by 50%.” • “Initial response times were reduced from average 22 days to average 14 days.” • “With the availability of up to date data, telephone queries were centralised and dealt with efficiently by a smaller number of people.” '06 DOPS won a major National Award for pioneering work in the application of new technology in the delivery of public services. 07' DOPS was one of the 52 short listed finalists in the Epractice.eu EC eGovernment awards, and was showcased as an example of best practice throughout Europe at the 4th Ministerial E-Government Conference in Lisbon Portugal Sept 2007.
Contact details to obtain further information on the practice
Siobhán Foy Brian Boyle
Donegal County Council
Annex completed on: 04-05-2011