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Planning and development surveyors are concerned with the most progressive arm of surveying being central to new developments or regenerations and refurbishments.
Planning in itself must consider all factors well in advance of proposed construction. New developments or refurbishments can have a great and long-term impact on surrounding areas, local communities and, at the very high end, entire cities.
Planning and development surveyors work incredibly closely with town and/or government planners; sometimes they are one and the same. They must investigate the site and ensure it is ripe for development, draw up suitable and detailed plans with architects and retain a position of authority throughout.
Most surveyors specialise in a particular area, especially in the case of the very largest developments. Specialisms include (though not exclusively) land measurement, site usage, purchase, transport links and green issues.
Development and planning surveyors are some of the most in-demand in the industry, but this field also represents one of the most competitive. It is attractive as developers are at the helm of land usage and design and can therefore find themselves in a position that can greatly affect the finished product, i.e. the surrounding areas.
Planning and development surveyors have a wide range of professional bodies they can work for. Most will begin their work within the government and/or local authority, or one of the larger surveying firms. Once they have gained experience, the very best tend to break away and set up their own practices, selecting their own sites, raising their own funding but ultimately taking all of the profits.
Ensuring all regulations are complied with is most important, particularly with the current ‘green’ and sustainability concerns sweeping the property markets.