TOWN AND COUNTRY PLANNING ORDINANCE

Arrangement of Sections

1. Short title.

PART I

GENERAL PROVISIONS

2. Scope of National Physical Plan.

3. Constitution of the National Physical Planning Council.

4. Powers and functions of the Council.

4A. Constitution of an Inter-Ministerial Coordinating Committee on National Physical Planning.

4B. Powers and duties of the Coordinating Committee.

5. Appointment of Director-General, National Physical Planning Act.

5A. Duties and function of the Director-General of National Physical Planning.

5B. Powers of the Director-General of the National Physical Planning.

5C. Technical Advisory Committee.

5D. Functions of the Advisory Committee.

5E. Term of office of the members of the Advisory Committee.

PART II

DEVELOPMENT AREAS AND PLANNING AND EXECUTIVE AUTHORITIES

6. Urban development areas.

7. Trunk road development areas.

8. Regional development areas.

9. Planning authorities.

10. Executive authorities.

11. Executive authorities in relation to roads.

12. Constitution of Regional Planning Committees.

13. Transaction of business by Regional Committees.

14. Dissolution of Regional Committees.

15. Expenses of Regional Committees.

16. Expenditure on preparation of plans for urban development.

17. Expenses of Director-General of Highways.

PART III

PLANNING PROCEDURE

18. Application for directions to prepare a regional physical plan.

19. Application for directions to prepare an outline physical plan.

20. Application for directions to prepare a detail plan.

21. Order for preparation of plan.

22. Discretion of Minister as to area or land for which outline physical plan or detail plan is to be prepared.

23. Special provisions for planning of land contiguous to urban development areas.

24. Preparation of draft plans.

25. Provisional approval of draft plan.

26. Notice of approval of draft plans and inspection of plan.

27. Objections to draft plans.

28. Sanction of draft plan by Minister.

29. Restrictions as to approval or sanctioning of draft plans.

30. Incorporation in outline physical plan or detail plan of provision contained in regional physical plan.

31. Approval of plans.

32. Coming into operation of plans.

33. Refusal to approve plan not to prevent preparation new plan.

34. Application for modification or revocation of plans.

35. Order or decision for modification or revocation of plan.

36. Preparation of new plan to modify or revoke plan.

37. Coming into operation of decision to revoke any provision in a plan.

PART IV

CONTENTS OF PLANNING SCHEMES

38. General provisions as to contents of plans.

39. Plans for trunk road development.

40. Provisions in outline physical plans.

41. Provisions in detail plans.

42. Modification or suspension of other enactments.

43. Provisions of plans to prevail over provisions of subsidiary legislation.

44. Provision directing the use of powers conferred by other written law.

45. Special provisions as to redistribution of land.

PART V

INTERIM DEVELOPMENT OF LAND

46. Interim development orders.

47. Restrictions in respect of interim development.

48. Issue of permits for interim development.

49. Appeal against refusal of permit for interim development.

50. Grant of permit not to affect other written law.

PART VI

EXECUTION OF SCHEMES

51. Duty of executive authority to executive provisions in plans.

52. Powers exercisable by executive authorities.

53. Conditions relating to exercise of powers conferred by section 52.

54. Redistribution of land.

55. Permits for execution, alteration of structures and for execution of works in connection with roads.

56. Application of other law in execution of plans.

57. Notification of completion of work by executive authority.

PART VII

ACQUISITION OF LAND, COMPENSATION FOR INJURIOUS AFFECTION BETTERMENT CONTRIBUTIONS

58. Enforcement of provision for acquisition of land.

59. Modification of section 45(1) of Land Acquisition Act.

60. Modification of section 48 of Land Acquisition Act.

61. Possession.

62. Funds out of which compensation is payable.

63. Use of acquired property by executive authority.

64. Right to compensation for injurious affection.

65. Exclusion of compensation in respect of loss consequent upon erection of new structure, change of use.

66. Provisions in plan to exclude compensation for injurious affection.

67. Effect of new plans on rights to compensation.

68. Making of claims for compensation for injurious affection.

69. Determination of claims for compensation for injurious affection.

70. Payment of compensation in certain cases.

71. Power to recover betterment contribution.

72. Appeal against levy of betterment contribution.

73. Payment of betterment contribution.

PART VIII

SUPPLEMENTARY PROVISIONS, REGULATIONS

74. Returns information.

75. Powers of entry.

76. Power to allow owners or occupiers to execute work on behalf of executive authority.

77. Service of notices.

78. Signature of documents issued or served by authorities.

79. Expenditure.

80. Authority for expenditure from funds of local authorities and for imposition of special rate.

81. Regulations.

82. Offences.

83. Offences by officers of planning authority.

84. Penalty for offences.

85. Interpretation.

86. Ordinance not to apply to land or structures belonging to the State or occupied by the armed forces.

87. Ordinance not to apply to ancient monuments or archaeological reserves.

88. This Act to prevail over other laws.

SCHEDULES

13 of 1946.

9 of 1950,

29 of 1953,

10 of 1955,

22 of 1955,

57 of 1981,

49 of 2000.

AN ORDINANCE to authorise the formulation and implementation of a National Physical Planning policy; the making and implementation of a National Physical Plan with the object of promoting and regulating integrated planning of economic, social, physical and environmental aspects of land in Sri Lanka; to provide for the protection of natural amenities, the conservation of natural environment, buildings of architectural and historic interest and places of natural beauty; to facilitate the acquisition of land for the purpose of giving effect to such plan and to provide for matters incidental to or connected with the matters aforesaid.

[Subs by s 2 of Act 49 of 2000.]

[Date of Commencement: 1st January, 1947]

1. Short title.

This Ordinance may be cited as the Town and Country Planning Ordinance.

PART I

GENERAL PROVISIONS

2. Scope of National Physical Plan.

A National Physical Plan may be prepared under this Ordinance in conformity with the National Physical Planning policy, with respect to land, whether there are or are not buildings thereon, with the general object of promoting and regulating the development of the land, of securing proper infrastructure, amenities and conveniences, of conserving the natural and built environment of architectural, historic of aesthetic interest and of natural beauty.

[S 2 subs by s 3 of Act 49 of 2000.]

3. Constitution of the National Physical Planning Council.

(1) There shall be established a National Physical Planning Council (hereinafter referred to as the Council) consisting of—

(a) the Head of the Government, who shall be the Chairman;

(b) the Minister in charge of the subject of National Physical Planning, who shall be the Vice Chairman;

(c) the Minister in charge of the subject of Economic Planning;

(d) the Minister in charge of the subject of Finance;

(e) the Minister in charge of the subject of Land;

(f) the Minister in charge of the subject of Agriculture;

(g) the Minister in charge of the subject of Industry;

(h) the Minister in charge of the subject of Housing;

(i) the Minister in charge of the subject of Urban Development;

(j) the Minister in charge of the subject of Transport;

(k) the Minister in charge of the subject of Highways;

(l) the Minister in charge of the subject of Ports;

(m) the Minister in charge of the subject of Civil Aviation;

(n) the Minister in charge of the subject of Coast Conservation;

(o) the Minister in charge of the subject of the Environment;

(p) the Minister in charge of the subject of Forestry;

(q) the Minister in charge of the subject of Tourism;

(r) the Minister in charge of the subject of Irrigation;

(s) the Minister in charge of the subject of Power;

(t) the Minister in charge of the subject of Culture;

(u) the Minister in charge of the subject of Provincial Councils;

(v) the Minister in charge of the subject of Plan Implementation;

(w) the Minister in charge of the subject of Health.

(x) Chief Ministers of all Provinces.

(2) The Chairman may, if the Chairman is satisfied that the proposed National Physical Plan or other matter which is being or is about to be considered by the Council affects or is likely to affect the interest of any Ministry which is not represented in the Council, request the Minister in charge of that Ministry to be present and to vote at meetings of the Council at which such National Physical Plan or matter is considered, and any Minister so requested, shall, whenever such National Physical Plan or matter is considered at a meeting of the Council, be deemed to be a member of the Council.

(3) The Chairman, shall preside at all meetings of the Council. In the absence of the Chairman from any meeting of the Council, the Vice Chairman shall preside at such meeting.

(4) The Minister in charge of the subject of Physical Planning shall, in consultation with the Chairman, be the convener of meetings of the Council.

(5) The Secretary of the Ministry of the Minister in charge of the subject of National Physical Planning shall be the Secretary of the Council.

(6) Subject to the preceding provisions of this section the Council may regulate the procedure in regard to the meetings of the Council and the transaction of business at such meetings.

[S 3 subs by s 3 of Act 49 of 2000.]

4. Powers and functions of the Council.

The Council shall have power—

(a) to consider and approve, with or without modification, the National Physical Planning policy and the draft National Physical Plan submitted by the Inter-Ministerial Coordinating Committee;

(b) to direct the Inter-Ministerial Coordinating Committee to re-submit the National Physical Planning policy or any draft National Physical Plan modified or amended as instructed by the Council;

(c) to consider any draft regional physical plan as may be submitted to it by the Inter-Ministerial Coordinating Committee as to its conformity with the National Physical Plan or National Physical Planning policy and approve such plan;

(d) to refer back to the Inter-Ministerial Coordinating Committee any such draft regional physical plan with directions that it be resubmitted with amendment or modification, as may be specified, effected;

(e) to require the National Physical Planning Department to ensure funds, from its annual budget for the implementation of the plan approved by the Council;

(f) to give the Inter-Ministerial Coordinating Committee such directions including a time frame for the implementation of the plan as may reasonably be necessary to ensure the achievement of the objectives of the Ordinance.

[S 4 subs by s 3 of Act 49 of 2000.]

4A. Constitution of an Inter-Ministerial Coordinating Committee on National Physical Planning.

(1) There shall be established an inter-Ministerial Coordinating Committee on National Ministerial Physical Planning (hereinafter referred to as "Coordinating Committee”).

(2) The Coordinating Committee shall consist of the following members who shall be appointed by the Minister, appointed under Article 44 of the Constitution to be in charge of the subject of Physical Planning—

(a) The Secretaries of the Ministries of the Ministers appointed under Article 44 of the Constitution in charge respectively of the subjects of—

(i) Physical Planning;

(ii) Economic Planning;

(iii) Finance;

(iv) Land;

(v) Agriculture

(vi) Industry;

(vii) Housing;

(viii) Transport;

(ix) Highways;

(x) Ports;

(xi) Civil Aviation;

(xii) Coast Conservation;

(xiii) Environment;

(xiv) Forestry

(xv) Tourism;

(xvi) Irrigation;

(xvii) Power;

(xviii) Home Affairs;

(xix) Provincial Councils;

(xx) Plan Implementation;

(xxi) Culture;

(xxii) Fisheries;

(xxiii) Mahaweli Development;

(xxiv) Plantation;

(xxv) Construction.

(b) the Chief Secretaries of all Provinces;

(c) the Director-General of National Physical Planning;

(d) the Director-General of National Planning;

(e) the Director-General of Urban Development Authority appointed under the Urban Development Authority Law No. 41 of 1978; and

(f) the Director-General of the Board of Investment of Sri Lanka appointed under the Board of Investment of Sri Lanka Law No 4 of 1978.

(3) The Secretary of the Ministry of the Minister in charge of the subject of National Physical Planning shall be the Chairman of the Coordinating Committee.

(4) The Chairman of the Coordinating Committee may if he is satisfied that the proposed National Physical Plan or other matter which is being or is about to be considered by the Coordinating Committee affects or is likely to affect the interest of any Ministry which is not represented in the Coordinating Committee, request the Secretary to that Ministry to be present and vote at meetings of the Coordinating Committee at which such National Physical Plan or matter is considered, and any Secretary so requested shall, whenever such National Physical Plan or matter is considered at a meeting of the Coordinating Committee be deemed to be a member of the Committee.

(5) The Chairman or in his absence, a member elected by the members present, shall preside at meetings of the Coordinating Committee.

(6) All questions for decisions at meetings of the Coordinating Committee shall be decided by the vote of a majority of the members present. In the case of an equality of votes, the member presiding shall have a casting vote.

(7) The quorum for any meeting of the Coordinating Committee shall be ten members and subject to the provisions of this section, the Coordinating Committee may regulate its own procedure.

[S 4A ins by s 4 of Act 49 of 2000.]

4B. Powers and duties of the Coordinating Committee.

It shall be the duty of the Coordinating Committee—

(a) to cause a draft policy on National Physical Planning and a draft National Physical Plan to be prepared by the Director-General of National Physical Planning;

(b) to cause any approved policy on National Physical Planning and any approved National Physical Plan to be reviewed, revised and updated from time to time as may be necessary;

(c) to examine any draft or revised policy on National Physical Planning or any draft or revised National Physical Plan submitted to it to cause any amendment or modification which the Coordinating Committee considered necessary to be made thereto and to make recommendations thereon to the Council;

(d) to examine any draft or revised regional physical plan submitted to it and make recommendations thereon to the Council:

(e) to advise the Council with regard to the declaration of any strategic development area in a regional physical plan and of the formulation of a development plan for such area:

(f) to implement any directions received from the Council.

[S 4Bins by s 4 of Act 49 of 2000.]

5. Appointment of Director-General, National Physical Planning Act.

There may be appointed—

(a) a person by name or by office to be or to act as Director-General, National Physical Planning;

(b) such Assistants to the Director-General, National Physical Planning, and such other officers and servants as may be necessary for the purpose of enabling the Director-General, National Physical Planning to exercise and perform the powers, functions and duties conferred or imposed on him by or under this Ordinance.

[S 5 am by s 6 of Act 49 of 2000.]

5A. Duties and function of the Director-General of National Physical Planning.

The duties and functions of the Director-General of the National Physical Planning shall be—

(a) to formulate a National Physical Planning policy;

(b) to prepare a National Physical Plan;

(c) to prepare physical planning guide lines to be adopted by the regional or local physical planning authorities;

(d) to prepare any regional or local plan where the regional or local planning authority fails in, or requests, the preparation of such plan;

(e) to assist Provincial Councils in the preparation and development of regional physical plans;

(f) to make recommendations to the Coordinating Committee on plans in accordance with the National Physical Planning policy, for submission to the Council;

(g) to review and examine, periodically the National Physical Planning policy, the National Physical Plan and the National Physical Planning strategy in operation and where necessary, to recommend to the Coordinating Committee, change in such policy, plan and strategies;

(h) to monitor the implementation of the National Physical Plan sanctioned by the Council; and

(i) to assist the Council and the Coordinating Committee in all activities including performing functions of a secretariat which it may be called upon to do by the Council and the Coordinating Committee.

[S 5A ins by s 7 of Act 49 of 2000.]

5B. Powers of the Director-General of the National Physical Planning.

(1) The Director-General of the National Physical Planning shall have the power to do all such acts as may be necessary for the discharge of all or any of his functions under the Ordinance.

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of the powers conferred on him by subsection (1) he shall have power—

(a) to carry out such surveys, investigations, studies and research as may be necessary for the discharge of his functions relating to the National Physical Planning and National Physical Plans;

(b) to conduct hearing with a view to ascertaining the opinions of experts, professionals or the general public on matters relating to National Physical Plan;

(c) to establish and maintain liaison with international institutions and organisations outside Sri Lanka discharging functions similar to those discharged by the National Physical Planning Department;

(d) to establish and maintain an information data bank of National Physical Plan and regional physical plans;

(e) to engage consultants and take such steps as may be necessary to advance the skills of his officers with the view to developing a pool of expertise in all aspects of national and regional physical planning;

(f) to call for and obtain such information as the National Physical Planning would require including statistics and data from Ministries, Government Departments, Public Corporations Statutory Boards, Provincial Councils, Local Authorities and private sector establishments;

(g) to ensure through the Ministry of the Minister, funding, either from the local or foreign sources to bridge any shortfall in the budget allocation for the implementation of the plan; and

(h) to adopt all measure which in the opinion of the Director-General are considered necessary for conducive or incidental to, the discharge exercise and performance, of the functions, powers and duties related to the National Physical Planning.

[S 5B ins by s 7 of Act 49 of 2000.]

5C. Technical Advisory Committee.

There shall be established a Technical Advisory Committee (hereinafter referred to as the "the Advisory Committee”) consisting of the following members—

(a) a representative of the Institute of Town Planners of Sri Lanka established under the Institute of Town Planners, Sri Lanka (Incorporation) Act No 23 of 1986;

(b) a representative of the Sri Lanka Institute of Architects established under the Sri Lanka Institute of Architects Law No. 1 of 1976:

(c) a representative of the Institute of Engineers, Ceylon established under the Institute of Engineers, Ceylon, Act No. 17 of 1968:

(d) a representative of the Surveyors Institute of Sri Lanka established under the Surveyors Institute of Sri Lanka (Incorporation) Act No. 22 of 1982;

(e) a representative from the Road Development Authority to be nominated by the Minister in charge of the subject of Transport;

(f) a representative from the Land Use Policy Planning Division of the Ministry of Lands to be nominated by the Minister in charge of the subject of Lands;

(g) a representative from the Ceylon Electricity Board to be nominated by the Minister in charge of the subject of Power;

(h) a representative from the Ministry of Finance to be nominated by the Minister in charge of the subject of Finance;

(i) a representative from the Ministry of Planning to be nominated by the Minister in charge of the subject of Planning:

(j) one member from among persons who have had experience and qualifications in the field of physical planning;

(k) one member from among persons who have had experience and qualifications in the field of water resources.

[S 5C ins by s 7 of Act 49 of 2000.]

5D. Functions of the Advisory Committee.

The functions of the Advisory Committee shall be to—

(a) advise the Director-General of the National Physical Planning in the formulation of National Physical Planning policy and on the preparation of the National Physical Plan;

(b) advise the Director-General on the National Physical Planning strategy; and

(c) advise the Director-General on any other matter relating to national and regional physical planning that may be referred to the Advisory Committee by the Director-General.

[S 5D ins by s 7 of Act 49 of 2000.]

5E. Term of office of the members of the Advisory Committee.

(1) Every member of the Advisory Committee shall be appointed by the Minister and shall, unless he earlier vacates office by death resignation or removal, hold office for a period of three years from the date of appointment and shall be eligible for re-appointment.

(2) The Minister may, if he considers it expedient to do so, by Order published in the Gazette, remove from office any member of the Advisory Committee for reason assigned therefor.

(3) A member of the Advisory Committee may at any time resign from his office by letter to that effect addressed to the Minister.

(4) If any member of the Advisory Committee dies resigns or is removed from office, the Minister may appoint any other person to be a member in place of the member who dies, resigns or is removed from office.

(5) A member who has been appointed under subsection (4) shall, unless he earlier vacates his office by death, resignation or removal, hold office for the unexpired period of the term of office of his predecessor.

(6) The Advisory Committee may discharge its functions notwithstanding any vacancy among its members.

(7) Three members of the Advisory Committee shall constitute a quorum for any meeting of the Advisory Committee.

(8) Subject to the provisions of this Ordinance the Committee may regulate the procedure in regard to its meeting and the transaction of business at the meeting.

(9) The members of the Advisory Committee may be paid such remuneration as may be determined by the Minister in consultation with the Minister in charge of the subject of Finance.

[S 5E ins by s 7 of Act 49 of 2000.]

PART II

DEVELOPMENT AREAS AND PLANNING AND EXECUTIVE AUTHORITIES

6. Urban development areas.

(1) Every Municipality, and every town within the meaning of the Urban Councils Ordinance, shall be an urban development area for the purposes of this Ordinance.

(2) The Minister may, by Order published in the Gazette, declare—

(a) that any town within the meaning of the Town Councils Ordinance and specified in the Order, or

(b) that any area, other than a Municipality or a town referred to in subsection (1) or paragraph (a) of this subsection, specified in the Order,

shall be an urban development area for the purposes of this Ordinance.

(3) Any town or any area referred to in paragraph (b) of subsection (2), which is declared by or under this Ordinance to be an urban development area shall, notwithstanding that it may be included in any regional development area, continue to be an urban development area and the provisions of this Ordinance shall apply accordingly.

7. Trunk road development areas.

(1) The Minister may, by Order published in the Gazette, declare that any area within a specified distance on either side of any principal thoroughfare shall be a trunk road development area for the purposes of this Ordinance:

Provided, however, that no area which is situated within any urban development area shall be declared under this section to be a trunk road development area or be included in any such area.

(2) Any area which is declared under this Ordinance to be a trunk road development area shall, notwithstanding that it may be included in any regional development area, continue to be a trunk road development area, and the provisions of this Ordinance shall apply accordingly.

8. Regional development areas.

(1) The Minister may, by Order published in the Gazette, declare that any area specified in such Order shall be a regional development area for the purposes of this Ordinance.

(2) Any urban development area or trunk road development area may be included in any regional development area:

9. Planning authorities.

(1) The planning authority for the purpose of the preparation of any outline physical plan or detail plan for any urban development area or any land in that area—

(a) shall, if that area is a Municipality or a town referred to in subsection (1) of section 6 or in paragraph (a) of subsection (2) of that section, be the local authority for that Municipality or town, as the case may be; or

(b) shall, if that area is not a Municipality or a town as aforesaid, be the Director-General, National Physical Planning and the Chairman of the Village Council in which the area is situated.

(2) The Director-General of Highways shall be the planning authority for the purpose of the preparation of any outline physical plan or detail plan for any trunk road development area or for any land in any such area.

(3) A Regional Planning Committee, which shall be constituted in accordance with the provisions of section 12 for each regional development area, shall be the planning authority for the purpose of the preparation of a regional physical plan for all areas in that region, including areas declared by or under this Ordinance to be urban development areas or trunk road development areas.

[S 9 am by s 9 of Act 49 of 2000.]

10. Executive authorities.

(1) Subject to the provisions of section 11, the executive authority for the purpose of the execution in any urban development area of any outline physical plan or detail plan or of any provision in any regional physical plan which applies to that area or any land therein—

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