The government is taking action to speed up the section 106 process with the revision of circular 1/97, the guidance that covers planning obligations such as affordable homes on housing schemes.

Measures in the amended guidance, which will come out this month, will include the requirement to use standard legal agreements, encouragement of the use of standard charges, and clarification of policy on contributions for affordable housing.

The revision of the circular is considered to be a transitional measure.

The planning obligation process is the subject of broader reform following Kate Barker’s review of housing supply in March. Barker advocated simplification of the S106 process and the creation of a “planning gain” supplement.

The revised circular also brings the planning obligations system into line with the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act.

The ODPM is aiming to present its nine design code pilot schemes at its January sustainable communities summit in Manchester.