The Place Standard – Getting Going

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The Place Standard tool was launched in December 2015 to support the delivery of high quality places in Scotland. The tool provides a simple structure for conversation on issues and outcomes linking physical and social aspects of placemaking.

Who is using Place Standard and for what?

At the end of 2016 we published a series of articles where we explore recent ways in which Architecture and Design Scotland has helped organisations to test, develop and apply the Place Standard.  We demonstrated formats for engagement and some of the outcomes and benefits of applying the tool.  This has been part of our partnership work in jointly leading development of the tool with Scottish Government and NHS Health Scotland.

Current guidance sets out stages when place standard has potential to enhance outcomes:

  • Identifying community needs and assets
  • Aligning priorities and investment decisions – amongst agencies
  • Community empowerment
  • Action Planning
  • Informing Proposals – professional use
  • Reviewing proposals – both communities and professionals
  • Monitoring changes or investments in the longer term
  • Informing community after-care or stewardship
  • Shared learning

Roadmaps for the Place Standard

Our next phase of work is to create a series of evidenced roadmaps which illustrate how Place Standard can be mainstreamed into decision-making and delivery processes. The Pathfinder project will be achieved by collaborating with partners and organisations on live projects.

Supporting the process of place based change

The Pathfinder will draw on the resources of Place Standard partners, as well as the cross cutting nature of A&DS services design and place around:

  • Public infrastructure
  • Place planning
  • Developing skills
  • Promoting architecture and design

We would be delighted to hear from you on your needs, how Place Standard might help and how we can support you with our services to make better places.

The Improvement Service is also offering support in using and applying the Place Standard tool. Find out more here.


Throughout November 2016 we published seven articles on the initial implementation of the Place Standard:

1. Read about how the Carnegie UK Trust tested the Place Standard tool with communities who were winners of the Carnegie Prize for Design and Wellbeing.

2. Read about how the Place Standard was used to discuss growth in South Queensferry.

3. Find out more about the use of the Place Standard in Arbroath.

4. Read about Corporate Working in Shetland

5. Find out how North Ayrshire Council to road tested the Place Standard in Irvine.

6. Read about how the Place Standard was used in preparing for a housing development in Shetland.

Image: From Central Scotland Green Network Trust’s trial of the Place Standard.

Place Standard: Arbroath

Working with Place Standard partners A&DS led a workshop at an Angus Managers Forum event.

Place Standard: Housing in Shetland

A&DS helped Hjaltland Housing Association and Shetland Islands Council prepare for the development of Shetland’s largest housing site at Staneyhill.

Seeding Regeneration in Port Dundas

A&DS helped Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Canal Regeneration Partnership and BIGG Regeneration in their discussions for Port Dundas, Glasgow

OUR WORK: Empowering Communities

A&DS supports communities, providing advice and support and we promote the benefits of community engagement and share examples of good work.

Making Places

Making Places: This project is about community empowerment and capacity building through community events and workshops.

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