Deputy First Minister John Swinney has announced the development of a land and property information service for Scotland.
The Keeper of the Registers of Scotland (RoS), Sheenagh Adams, will lead a task force to develop an online system that will allow users to find out comprehensive information about any piece of land or property in Scotland with a single enquiry. The task force has been asked to report to the Deputy First Minister by July this year.
Sheenagh Adams said: “The creation of a land and property information system for Scotland is an exciting development that fits with our current project of completing the land register. Not only will this system make our economy more efficient, but it will reduce both the risks and costs of doing business. Developing the system will involve providing access to the data contained across a wide range of sources. This will remove the current costs and barriers sometimes involved with searching for land and property information.”
Professor Stewart Brymer has agreed to be a member of the task force in his capacity as Chair of Unifi Scotland (www.unifiscotland.com). He commented: “We have a great opportunity to build a spatial information system in Scotland that could be the best in the world. The data is all available but it is held in a range of disparate places. Bringing it together will benefit the economy and increase the knowledge that citizens should have about land and property. There are some excellent systems in other countries such as Norway which can be learned from in creating a digital land and property information service in Scotland.”
In addition, Sarah Speirs of RICS Scotland and Dominic Cuthbert of Ordnance Survey (both of whom are also members of Unifi Scotland) have been invited to join the task force. The Law Society of Scotland is represented by Ross Mackay the Chair of the Society’s Property Law Committee and the Future of Conveyancing Working Party.