Urban Regulations in Romania (Zoning)

Architect Octavian Ungureanu / Architect’s Blog / Urban Regulations in Romania (Zoning)

How to build in Romania: Zoning

Urban Regulations in Romania are applicable in all areas: urban, rural areas, and even agricultural lands.

Urban Regulations are set by:

  • The General Urban Regulations (Regulamentul General de Urbanism –RGU) (Government Decision No. 525/1996 – Hotararea de Guvern Nr. 525/1996). It is the base for all local urban regulations.
  • Local (City) Urban Regulations (Regulament Local de Urbanism – RLU) are parts of the General Urban Plans that are approved for all cities, towns, and villages. RLU segregates the different types of zones in a locality such as Low-density Residential, High-Density Residential, Commercial Zone, Industrial Zones, Green Zones, Central Zones, Mixed Zones, Historic Preservation Zones, etc. RLUs are the Zoning Regulations in Romania

Typical Zoning, according to Local Urban Regulations:

  • Admissible use of land (functionality), with and without conditions
  • Interdiction of use
  • Minimal Conditions for Constructible Plots of Land. Those conditions are different for different types of land occupancy and set the minimal surface, width, and forms for plots of land.
  • POT (The Ground Occupancy Percentage – Procent de Ocupare al Terenului) it sets the maximum percentage of the plot of land that can be built.
  • CUT (Land Utilization Coefficient – Coeficientul de Utilizare a Terenului). It sets the ratio of the land surface that can be built.
  • Building Heights sets limits both for cornices and maximum heights.
  • Rules regarding the relationship between buildings on the same plot.
  • Rules regarding the relationship between buildings on neighboring plots.

The RLUs have even more sets of rules, according to the importance of each zone, and might include specifications of building materials, green spaces on the land, fences, etc.

Urban Regulations (Zoning) Amendments

Even though RLUs apply for all plots of land, their prescriptions can be changed by one of the following:

  • New Zone Regulations. They are approved by the Local Council following the approval of new Zone Urban Plans (Planuri Urbanistice Zonale – PUZ). The PUZs can be both public or private initiatives. They can change one of the following: Zone Functionality, Minimal Conditions for Constructible Plots, POTs, CUTs, Building Heights, etc. The PUZs can be asked by the Local Urban Regulations itself. Special zones are set by these types of Urban Plans, such as Historic Preservation Zones, and new infrastructure projects. Most of the Public Works can’t be made without a preliminary PUZ (such as new streets, water, and sewerage networks, public buildings, etc)
  • Detailed Regulations are set with Detailing Urban Plans (PUD- Plan Urbanistic de detaliu), approved by the local councils too. Even if they can’t change the CUT or the land use, they can correct the POT and the conditions for minimal constructible plots.

Zoning – Construction Development Scenarios

Urban Regulations have a great impact on the way a plot of land can be used and what kind of building can be developed on it.

The Preliminary Stage Consultancy is a service offered to our clients and is based on a study of Construction Development Scenarios. Its main scope is to reveal the opportunities and possibilities that a potential plot of land can offer for future development.

  • The composition of all urban indicators (as set by the RLU – Local Urban Regulations) and building codes on the specific plot of land
  • The ground level surface, the total stories surfaces, the underground surfaces, usable areas, additional areas
  • The Amendment Feasibility: It sets if the maximal use of the land is reasonable and recommendable.
  • Volumes of the possible buildings
  • Building Costs

The Preliminary Stage Consultancy is a tool for developers that allows them to have:

  • Real-Time Evaluations: 6-24 hours
  • Realistic Construction Costs, including land costs, buildings costs, project costs, banking costs, utility costs
  • Preliminary Construction Timetables