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Design Quality is vital to Cornwall’s planning agenda. There has never been a more critical time to create and take up opportunities to make new development better. Improving the quality of our places and buildings will positively support:

  • tackling climate change
  • healthier lives for our residents
  • high quality streets and public spaces

The Cornwall Design Guide and Chief Officer's Advice Note on Good Design in Cornwall boost design quality and are material considerations in determining planning applications.  For larger residential-led applications, you may wish to look at Homes England's Building for a Healthy Life and new Streets for a Healthy Life.

We will also prepare a new Cornwall-wide Design Code and support Neighbourhood Planning Groups in preparing their own design codes in line with the National Model Design Code.  

We are launching a new Cornwall Design Review Panel with Design West in January 2023.

Cornwall Design Guide

The Cornwall Design Guide was adopted in December 2021.  It provides a guide to delivering high quality places to live for Cornwall. It includes our streetscape design guide.

The Design Guide supports:

The design guide is a 'living document'.  We will update it as required.

We welcome comments on the guide.  You can email feedback to

Waste Planning Guidance for New Developments

All new domestic property or housing development needs to take into consideration how individual households store their waste, and how this waste will be collected from individual properties. The Council has developed a waste guidance checklist document for planners and developers which is linked to Cornwall Council’s Design Guide. Applications will be reviewed to understand how proposals meet these new standards.

Streets for People Design Guide

This is a framework for how we design streets which are safer and more pleasant for walking, cycling, and using public transport.

Cornwall Design Review Panel

The Cornwall Design Review Panel (CDRP)  draws on a pool of external design expertise. This is supported by experienced officers from within the Council.

The purpose of the Design Review Panel is to encourage design excellence in both the public and private sectors. It can:

  • review development proposals within Cornwall and
  • provide constructive guidance to developers, clients and their appointed agents.

The aim is to enhance the quality of the design of significant projects.

Other related guidance

The new guides will sit alongside other guidance documents including:

Neighbourhood Planning Groups may also be interested in our:

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