Local Planning Authority   

The functions of the Local Planning Authorities are to regulate the physical development of the town according to the land uses envisaged in the Master Plan and Detailed Development Plan. Local Planning Authorities formulate new schemes based on the Master Plans. There are two types of Local Planning Areas identified by this department.

Single Local Planning Authority 

There are certain municipal areas, where the development of the town is mostly confined within the town boundary itself; the concerned municipality is declared as Single Local Planning Authority (SLPA) to carry out the planning functions.

Composite Local Planning Authority 

There are towns, which have grown beyond their boundaries. The Corporation or Municipality could not control the development beyond their jurisdiction, as the adjoining areas may lie either in Town Panchayat or Village Panchayat. Such towns combined with their adjoining areas are identified and declared as Composite Local Planning Areas controlled by Composite Local Planning Authorities (CLPA).

Preparation of Statuary Plans

Regional Plan 

The importance of regional planning was first stressed at Governmental level by the Housing & Regional Planning Panel (1955) of the Planning Commission. The objectives of balanced regional development was sought to be achieved through industrial location policy as "through balanced and coordinated development of industrial and agricultural economy in each region, the entire country can attain higher standard of living". In Tamil Nadu the state has been demarcated into eight regions taking into factors like geographical boundary, resource base, market potential and facilities, population threshold etc. Identification of growth poles, growth centres, service centres and proposal for development of transportation and communication network, provision of regional level facilities, conservation of flora and fauna, historical and heritage sites and constitution of regional planning authority to prepare and implement regional plan for the above causes are under process.

 Master Plan for Tindivanam Local planning Area

Master Plans (MPs) 

Master plan is prepared for town and cities giving emphasize for zoning regulation for judicious use of urban land. Thus a Master Plan is a key development plan to provide land use allotment for residential, commercial, industrial, public and semi-public, traffic and transportation, parks, play fields and open spaces, etc., taking into consideration the existing land uses. The plans while suggesting for broader land use restrictions, will also identify the problem areas in traffic and transport, location for education, recreation site etc., and propose for provision of infrastructure facilities based on the projected population for that area. Programmes are drawn and funding agencies are identified to take up such projects. 114 Local Planning Areas (108 Local Planning Areas and 6 New Town Development Areas) have been declared and master plans and new town development plans have been prepared for these urban areas.

Pazhayapalayam Detailed Development Plan in Rajapalayam Local Planning Area

Detailed Development Plans (DDPs) 

Detailed Development Plans are prepared in conformity with Master Plan proposals, prepared for smaller areas within the urban area. These are the action plans where the development projects and programmes are envisaged. It is a micro-level plan with detailed road network in which Master Plan is translated for development of specific area in the town which exhibits faster growth. So far 1625 detailed development plans have been prepared by this department for major urban centres of the State, of which 650 plans are approved by the Director, 282 are consented and 693 are in draft stage. The Detailed Development Plans are also reviewed periodically based on the trend of development.

 Sculptures in Mamallapuram New Town Development Area

New Town Development Plans (NTDPs) 

Taking into consideration the special nature of the area as industrial, educational, historical, heritage and tourism importance, the areas are developed fully utilising their potential into New Towns. There are 10 notified New Town Development Authorities (NTDAs) in the state and the department has prepared development plans for 6 areas and 8 authorities have been constituted.

Special Plans

Urban Renewal 

Urban Renewal is an enthusiastic theme in its concept and practice because it arouses the curiosity of every one in the area of human settlements where the programme comes for implementation / enforcement. The accelerating deterioration in urban areas frequently compel the City Development Organisation through various channels viz., political, administration, citizen forums etc., to apply remedial measures to arrest the deterioration of the standards of living condition. Massive urban development programmes that are contemplated

in Master Plans are often constrained by the vastness of finance and other socio-economic aspects. Thus it is highly essential to understand each of the components involved in the practice of Urban Renewal and their applicability for various land uses. The wide range of benefits to be derived from Urban Renewal includes both obvious and subtle benefits, which are at times too obscure to observe let alone measure and may be of physical and economic nature. So far the department has prepared 5 urban renewal programmes for the five Corporation cities of the State other than Chennai.

Road junction improvement in TOMP for Paramakudi

Traffic & Transportation Planning 

The growing scale of urbanization, city size and the prevailing land use patterns has made the problem of urban traffic and transportation increasingly complex and unmanageable. Urban transport in metropolitan cities is under increasing strains and suffers from bottlenecks arising from its weaknesses and ills. Studies have to be undertaken to study in depth the factors of travel time, mode and cost of travel, pollution and distance to work, education and entertainment. The residential and employment areas have to be served better. The Directorate has undertaken Comprehensive Traffic and Transport action (CTTS) for 5 Corporation cities in the State (Other than Chennai) and Traffic Operational and Management Plans (TOMP) for 58 small and medium towns in the State to suggest measures for improving traffic and transport facilities of these towns.

Heritage Town Development Plans 

The Government of Tamil Nadu is concerned about protection of the general environment of our priceless Heritage Towns and decided to take up the conservation and development of these towns. Government identified 38 towns and notified them as heritage Towns. Government also ordered the Director of Town and Country Planning to act as the nodal agency to prepare development plans for the towns by appointing consultants and professionals. The Directorate has prepared development plan for these notified Heritage Towns. As per the Government order, construction activities are regulated in the area within 1 km radius surrounding the heritage sites of these notified 38 heritage towns by imposing a restriction on the height of the buildings allowing only to a maximum of 9 m.


Development Plan for Urban Centres in Least Urbanized Taluks 

Urban development strategy aims at integration of economic and spatial planning in small and medium towns and thereby control migration of people from rural areas. It has been found that some taluks in the State do not have any urban centre for development, which could serve its surrounding villages. It was decided to identify such urban centres in these least urbanized taluks and develop them so as to act as service centres to its adjoining villages. This department has identified such least urbanized taluks in the State and has prepared development plans for 45 least urbanized taluks.

Civic Designs

The Regional offices of this Directorate are assisting the local bodies in preparing and approving the civic design for the development programmes such as construction of bus stand, markets, commercial complex etc., which are carried out by the urban local bodies in the State.

Town & Country Planning Development Fund

Section 64 of the Town and Country Planning Act, 1971 provides for the constitution of Town and Country Planning Development Fund for the purpose of furthering the Town and Country Planning functions under the Act by allocating money from the consolidated fund of the State from time to time. Accordingly, the Government has issued orders for constitution of the Town and Country Planning and Development Fund and as grant or loan to planning authorities is advanced from this fund for the performance of the following functions under this Act.

  • Preparation of Development Plan

  • Execution of Development Plans in full or part

  • Any other purpose incidental to the preparation or execution of Development Plans

    The Fund is utilized for the following purposes.

  • Implementation of State IUDP schemes.

    • Implementation of proposals of New Town Development Plans.

    • Implementation of proposals of Detailed

    • Development Plans/Master Plans

    • Grants for maintenance of Parks and play fields.

    • Implementation of projects for environmental protection of heritage places.

    • Undertaking various planning related studies like preparation of:

    • Traffic Operation and Management Plans;

    • Comprehensive Traffic and transportation plans;

    • Development plan for poorly urbanized taluks;

    • Development plan for heritage towns;

    • Urban renewal programme.

    • Implementation of other schemes under the Town and Country Planning Act, 1971.


      Integrated Urban Development Project (IUDP) 

      Under the State Government supported scheme Municipalities and Town Panchayats are entitled for financial assistance to a maximum of Rs.30.00 lakhs. Remunerative schemes such as bus stand, shopping complex, markets etc., are implemented through this programme to enhance the income of the urban local bodies. So far 271 Municipalities and Town Panchayats have been given loan assistance to a tune of Rs.50.099 Crores.

      Seed Capital Programme 

      Under this programme, fund is provided as grant for implementation of the proposals contemplated in the Master Plan, Detailed Development Plan and New Town Development Plan. Under this programme 50% of the cost estimate subject to a ceiling of Rs.20.00 lakhs project is sanctioned as full grant. So far this department has approved proposals of 15 Municipalities for implementation of projects at a total cost of Rs.180.60 lakhs.

      Development of Parks and Play Fields 

      In thickly populated towns and cities parks and play fields function as the lung space and recreation places. Due to the financial crunch of the local bodies parks and play fields are not properly maintained. The Government have programmed to finance as one time grant to improve and maintain them. Under this programme Rs.1.25 lakhs is given as grant by the Government. The respective local bodies or Non-Government Organizations have to contribute Rs.1.25 lakhs as their share towards the implementation of the projects.

      Heritage Town Development Projects 

      The Directorate has prepared development plans for 38 notified heritage towns with the assistance of the consultants. The Directorate has also taken steps to implement projects for environmental protection of heritage towns. Selection of 11 heritage towns in the first phase as was made and Government during 2002-03 allocated a sum of Rs. 5.50 crore for implementation of projects for environmental protection of heritage sites allowing a maximum expenditure of Rs. 50.00 lakhs for each of these 11 heritage towns to be funded as grant from the Town and Country Planning Development Fund. Government also allocated Rs. 2.50 crore and Rs. 3.75 crore selecting five heritage towns and nine heritage towns for implementation of similar projects during the year 2003-04 and 2004-05 respectively. Projects for providing parking lot with basic amenities like restaurant, toilet etc., within the parking lot itself and other projects towards conservation of the heritage town are being undertaken under this programme. The implementation of the scheme is at various stages of progress.

      Traffic and Transportation Projects 

      The State Government has issued orders for implementation of traffic improvement projects towards safe and smooth flow of traffic from one place to another from inter-city and intra-city. In the first phase the Government has sanctioned a sum of Rs.50 lakhs per city for 5 Corporation cities of Tamuil Nadu except Chennai and Rs.25 lakhs per town for 10 Municipal towns as grant to be funded under the Town & Country Planning Development Fund. The implementation of the scheme is at various stages of progress.

      Geographical Information System (GIS) 

      In the present scenario of rapid demographic and physical growth in urban areas, planning process through conventional methods takes a long time and requires huge man power in preparing maps of varying scales for all the towns for which master plans are prepared and they are also not cost and time effective. Therefore there is a need to adopt the latest technology of aerial photography, remote sensing and Geographical Information System (GIS). GIS is a modern tool through which such large volume of data and maps can be prepared in lesser time. GIS database has already been created for Tindivanam, Rajapalayam and Nagapattinam towns and additional data are being updated into the computers for these three towns. With the help of the already available computers, this department has taken up the work of preparation of GIS database for three towns namely viz., Sathur, Tiruvannamalai and Ranipet and the work is under progress. The updation and development of GIS database for these three towns will be continued during 2004-05.

      Various layers in map making through GIS

      Remote Sensing and Aerial Photography 

      Usage of Aerial Photograph for the preparation of maps for the Development Plans was introduced in the Directorate since 1979. The Development Plans are prepared and updated using the Aerial Photographs. Taluk wise land use maps were prepared with the assistance of the Institute of Remote Sensing (IRS) - Anna University using Imageries obtained through Satellites. It has been proposed to develop GIS database for six towns viz., Coimbatore, Madurai , Salem, Tiruchirapalli, Tirunelveli and Tiruppur using aerial photos, satellite imageries and ground surveys for certain towns of the State with Government of India funding assistance under National Urban Information System (NUIS) programme.

      A typical satellite imagery

      Issue of planning permission by LPAs and NTDAs   

      The Local Planning Authorities/ New Town Development Authorities issue planning permissions under the Town & Country Planning Act, 1971 for all developmental activities proposed in their jurisdiction like approval of layout and building plans.

      Layout Approval

      According technical guidance to the local bodies for formation and approval of layouts throughout Tamil Nadu (except Chennai Metropoiltan Area) is one of the major functions of the Directorate of Town and Country Planning. Proposals for layouts in less than 5 acres of extent received from the urban local bodies are scrutinised and suitable design of the layout is prepared and technically approved by the connected Local Planning Authorities/ New Town Development Authorities/ Regional offices of this Directorate. If the extent is more than 5 acres, the proposal is given technical approval at head office at Chennai. The layouts are prepared in accordance with the specified land use zone classification prescribed in the Master Plan, Detailed Development Plan and New Town Development Plan. Layouts proposed to be developed by Tamil Nadu Housing Board, Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board, Police Housing Corporation and Small Industries Development Corporation are processed and approved by this Directorate.

      Building Appeal Petitions

      This Department processes and passes orders on proposals for construction of multistoried and public buildings (if they are in conformity with rules), group housing etc. The appeal petitions addressed to Government received from the local bodies with reference to multi-storied buildings, public buildings and other buildings are forwarded with remarks to Government for final orders.

      Hill Area Conservation Authority (HACA)


      Government of Tamil Nadu have constituted an Ad-hoc Authority called "Tamil Nadu Hill Areas Conservation Authority" for conservation Hill Areas. Secretaries to Government of various Departments and heads of various Departments, Collectors of Nilgiris and Dindigul Districts comprising the important hill areas of the State are made as members of the Authority. The Secretary to Government, Housing and Urban Development Department is the Chairman and the Director of Town and Country Planning is the Member Secretary. The Government have notified the names of the villages which come under hill areas. The HACA considers the proposals in respect of these areas received from the Local Bodies / District Collectors / Government Departments etc., based on the Acts and Rules at its frequent meetings peruses the proposals made in these hill areas force and sends recommendation to the Government regarding the proposals for further orders of the Government.

      Architectural and Aesthetics Aspects (AAA) Committee

      Government have constituted the "Architectural and Aesthetics Aspects Committee" exclusively for the Districts viz., Nilgiris, Dindigul and Salem to assist the concerned District Collectors in sanctioning Building Licenses in the Hill Areas of the above said Districts. The AAA committees for Nilgiris, Salem and Dindigul Districts have been constituted with the respective District Collectors as Chairman and the respective Regional Deputy Directors of Town and Country Planning as Convenors and officials from Forests, Geology & Mining, Pollution Control Board, Municipal Commissioners and other Department officials as members. The AAA Committee before according its approval refers those proposals to the HACA for which clearance of HACA is necessary.

      Coastal Zone Management Plan

      The notification issued by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India during 1991 necessitated preparation of preparation of Coastal Zone Management Plan. This Directorate assisted in preparation of Coastal Zone Management Plan for the entire coast of Tamil Nadu to regulate the development in the area within 500 m from the High Tide Line (HTL). Director of Town and Country Planning is one of the members of State Coastal Zone Management Authority (SCZMA) and the Regional Deputy Directors of Town and Country Planning are members of the respective District Coastal Zone Management Authorities (DCZMA) constituted to monitor the Coastal Zone.

      Construction of Cyclone Shelters

      During the year 1990, the Directorate took the task of identification of the location for the construction of Cyclone Shelters and take part in providing the design of the structures in circular aerodynamic shape to safely bear the heavy seasonal wind load. More than one hundred Cyclone Shelters have been constructed all along the Tamil Nadu Coast by the World Red Cross Society with the assistance of this Directorate.