This week at Digital Land
Our week started well with a PropTech round table event. The Minister of State for Housing and Planning, Esther McVey, saw demonstrations of 5 digital products and then chaired a discussion with 12 PropTech companies. The Minister, who supports our strategy, announced several Digital Land projects including:
- opening up compulsory purchase orders data for the first time to improve transparency
- enabling PropTech companies to access more data, such as energy performance certificates and the square footage information of properties
- the introduction of a national index of brownfield sites, simplifying and improving the quality of data from brownfield land registers to help developers to find brownfield land to build on
- continuing to work with the PropTech industry to help open up data held by local authorities
We’re embracing new tech where the UK can lead the world. Housing Minister @EstherMcVey1 👷♀️ met some of the 700 #PropTech 👨💻 firms that are delivering a digital revolution – with 🏡 todays buyers now able to access an entire housing market on their phone pic.twitter.com/zTj6cAYspL— Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Govt (@mhclg) October 22, 2019
The response from those who took part has been positive and so far the event has been reported on in 15 industry and national press articles. A huge thanks to Natalie, Jess and Alice for all their hard work arranging the event.
Jake and Paul reviewed the specification alongside the data published by local authorities. After some discussion with policy colleagues, we decided to simplify the specification and made more fields optional. Emily and Michael updated our draft of the new guidance, following our the user tested format of the developer contributions guidance we recently published.
Helena, Lorna and Matt held a workshop with policy colleagues to map out how the legislation for completing the infrastructure funding statement (IFS) translates as a data output in relation to our model for publishing developer contributions data. We want to test whether we can use the CSV files to populate the IFS report.
Helena completed the screening process to select local authorities to test with for our private beta. We will be meeting with 6 local authorities whilst they follow our guidance to publish their developer contributions data.
Lorna analysed the findings from the usability lab sessions where we tested our compulsory purchase orders (CPO) prototype. The response from users was very positive and we learned some interesting and useful insights, which Lorna played-back to the team. For example, we observed that users had a different understanding of when a case was “closed”. We also heard different perceptions from users around whether CPO cases should be categorised by “type”, “power” or “legislation”.