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Legal Update

Town and City Planning Law for the Beach Front and the Adjacent Areas in Phang Nga Province

23 July 2010
Mayer Brown JSM Legal Update

The Ministerial Regulation regarding the Common Town and City Planning for the beach front and adjacent areas in the Kok Gloy and Tai Muang Communities in the Phang Nga Province has been proclaimed and published in the Government Gazette, and is effective for five years from 3 July 2010 to 2 July 2015.

In order to control land utilisation and development and to maintain the natural areas of the Kok Gloy and Tai Muang Communities (as defined below) which are adjacent to the beach front, the Ministry of Interior has proclaimed the Ministerial Regulation of the Common Town and City Planning for areas in the Kok Gloy and Tai Muang Communities 2010 by virtue of the Town and City Planning Act 1975 ("Ministerial Regulation 2010").

A summary of the Ministerial Regulation 2010 is as follows:

Enforceable Period

The Ministerial Regulation 2010 shall be enforceable for five years, from 3 July 2010 to 2 July 2015.

Enforceable Areas

The Ministerial Regulation 2010 shall be enforceable for the areas in Tai Muang Sub-district, Na Toey Sub-district, Kok Gloy Sub-district, Lor Yoong Sub-district, Ta Yoo Sub-district and Takua Toong Sub-district (collectively the "Kok Gloy and Tai Muang Communities") of Phang Nga Province, the boundaries of which are set forth in the map attached to the Ministerial Regulation 2010.

Division of Zoning for Enforcement

The Ministerial Regulation 2010 provides for zoning of the enforceable areas as follows:

Zone 1: Low-density residential zone;
Zone 2: Medium-density residential zone;
Zone 3: Commercial and high-density residential zone;
Zone 4: Rural and agriculture zone;
Zone 5: Open spaces for recreation and maintenance of environmental quality zone;
Zone 6: Forest Conservation zone;
Zone 7: Educational institution zone;
Zone 8: Open spaces for maintenance of environmental quality zone;
Zone 9: Religious institution zone; and
Zone 10: Government institution and public infrastructure zone.

Restrictions and Requirements for Land Utilisation

The Ministerial Regulation 2010 divides the areas in the Kok Gloy and Tai Muang Communities into 10 zones, and the restrictions and requirements for land utilisation in each zone vary.

For example, according to the map attached to the Ministerial Regulation 2010, the areas of land adjacent to or at the beach front will fall within the Forest Conservation Zone which is marked in green with white stripes. Utilisation of land and construction restrictions in that zone will be different from those provided in the other zones such as the Low-density Residential Zone which is marked in yellow.

Private parties or possessors who own land in the Forest Conservation Zone shall utilise the land mainly for agriculture or agriculture related activities, or for the construction of single houses, government buildings or government infrastructures. Not more than 50% of the plot under application for permission shall be utilised for other purposes.

For commercial development, the following constructions will be prohibited in the Forest Conversation Zone:

  • Land allocations (subdivisions) for industrial purposes
  • Land allocations (subdivisions) for commercial purposes
  • Land allocations (subdivisions) for residential purposes (except for single houses)
  • Buildings of more than 23 metres in height ("high-rise buildings")
  • Buildings of more than 2,000 square metres in area or buildings of more than 15 metres in height and with a total area of 1,000 square metres to 2,000 square metres ("large building")
  • Row houses, town houses and shop houses
  • Common living buildings

On the other hand, only land allocations (subdivisions) for residential purposes and common living buildings (i.e. condominium buildings) are not prohibited in the Low-density Residential Zone.

Developers planning a development will have to familiarise themselves with the details of land utilisation and construction restrictions in each zone. In particular, before entering into any agreement or committing funds for land acquisition, developers should conduct a comprehensive due diligence of the target land in order that such target land can be completely utilised as planned.

Conclusion

The beach front and adjacent areas in the Phang Nga Province has some of the most beautiful and scenic environments and are the favoured choice for property developers. Clearly, the Ministerial Regulation 2010 will impact on the planning and construction of developments by developers who have completed land acquisitions or are going to acquire target lands. Further, details of land utilisation in each zone are different. Developers who intend to construct as new developments should therefore seek professional advice on the construction restrictions as determined by the Town and City Planning Law and the other relevant laws and regulations before commencing.

For inquiries related to this Legal Update, please contact:

Anurag Ramanat ( )

Araya Akomsoonthorn ( )

Theerapon Narmponkrang ( )

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