Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (Russia) LLP (formerly Goltsblat BLP in Russia) advises that Federal Law No. 264-FZ dated 31 July 2020 “Amending the Urban Development Code and Certain Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation” (the “Law”) has been enacted reflecting recent year trends in town-panning regulations, including:
reinforcing the role of Russian regional authorities in town-planning;
re-distributing powers from municipal representative bodies to municipal administrations; and
de-emphasising the role of municipal district, urban and rural settlement master plans.
The amendments are intended to facilitate efficient delivery of investment and construction projects while significantly easing public control over urban planning and development.
The urban development legislation of Russia’s regions may provide for the following specifics of settlement and urban area master plans1:
master plans do not have to include maps of local facilities to be built in a settlement or an urban district (in this case, the map is subject to approval by the local administration);
master plans may include territories for which no functional zones have been established;
territorial planning regulations may specify the need for local facilities without identifying their main characteristics and location;
master plans may be prepared for specific settlement or an urban district and for territories outside settlements without any amendments required to the relevant master plan as far as other parts of the given settlement or urban district territory are concerned.
Moreover, urban plans may specify territories within settlements or urban districts outside the boundaries of population centres that are not to be changed in terms of their current use and require no master plans2.
Finally, the legislation of Russia’s regions may make town-planning standards, land use and development rules subject to approval by municipal administrations rather than municipal representative bodies3. Up until now, land use and development rules have only been approved and amended by executive authorities in the federal cities of Moscow, St Petersburg and Sevastopol.
1 Part 9, Article 23 of the Russian Urban Development Code as amended by the Law.
2  Part 31, Article 24 of the Russian Urban Development Code as amended by the Law.
3 Part 1, Article 29.4, Part 1, Article 32 of the Russian Urban Development Code as amended by the Law.
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