On 24 July 2020, the Law of Ukraine "On Amendments to Certain Ukrainian Legislation Related to Land Use Planning" No. 711-IX of 17 June 2020 ("Law 711") amending the Land Code of Ukraine, the Law of Ukraine "On Regulation of Urban Development Activities" and some other legislation, was published.
Law 711 will take effect on 24 July 2021 (with some minor exceptions).
Law 711 changes the rules for territory planning, determining and changing the designated use of land plots, and sets new requirements for expropriation of land plots for public needs. An overview of the changes introduced by Law 711 is given below.
- Territory planning rules will change at local level
- As provided by the applicable laws, the territorial community is the main subject of local self-government in Ukraine. However, the laws provided no special urban planning documentation that would apply to the community territory until Law 711 was adopted. This prevented the territorial community from setting guidelines for its own territory planning and development.
- Law 711 addresses this issue by introducing a new type of urban planning documentation, i.e., comprehensive plan for spatial territory development for the territorial community ("Comprehensive Plan for Spatial Development"). The Comprehensive Plan for Spatial Development will determine the planning organization, functional territory designation, functional zone boundaries, road network, engineering and transport infrastructure, etc., within the territory of the territorial community. There are no time limits set for the validity of the Comprehensive Plan for Spatial Development. Provisions of other local urban planning documents (master plans and detailed territory plans) will have to comply with the Comprehensive Plan for Spatial Development.
- Designated use of land plot will be determined according to functional zones set by the Comprehensive Plan for Spatial Development or master plan
- For many years, the designated use of land plots, functional territory designation and functional zones have been regulated in Ukraine by land and urban planning legislation. The designated use of land plots was determined in title documents for land plots and in the State Land Cadastre, while the functional designation of land, including the land plot, was set forth in the urban planning documentation (urban planning cadastres). Inconsistencies between designated use and functional designation in the registers tended to create problems for landowners and land users pertaining to the use of their land plots, while the mechanism for resolving the inconsistencies was not duly regulated by laws.
- Law 711 is aimed at addressing this issue. It provides that functional zones set by the Comprehensive Plan for Spatial Development or master plan will determine the permitted types of designated use of land plots within a certain territory. The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine will approve the classification of functional territory designations and permitted types of designated use of land plots by 24 January 2021.
- The State Land Cadastre will now contain information not only on the designated use of land plots, but also on the functional zones where these land plots will be located. According to Law 711, the relevant local councils will ensure by 1 January 2025 that the information on functional zones determined in the urban planning documentation is entered into the State Land Cadastre. As provided by Law 711, until then, the functional zone to which the land plot pertains will be determined in accordance with the applicable urban planning documentation.
- Procedure for changing designated use of land plots will be simplified
- The existing laws provide that the designated use of land plots is changed based on their land allocation designs and requires the adoption of the appropriate resolution by a local or government authority.
- Law 711 eliminates the need for the development of such documents (for land plots of all forms of ownership) and adoption by local or government authorities (for private land plots) of resolutions on changing the designated use of land plots within the determined functional territory designation from the moment of entering information on functional zones into the State Land Cadastre (i.e., as of 1 January 2025 or earlier).
- However, it will be possible to change the designated use without developing land allocation documentation as of 24 July 2021, provided that (i) the land plot, the designated use of which is being changed, is located within functional zones determined by local urban planning documentation approved before this date, and (ii) information on the functional zone within which the land plot is located is entered into the State Land Cadastre or, if such information is not entered into the cadastre, on the basis of an extract from urban planning documentation.
- From the moment of entering information on functional zones into the State Land Cadastre (i.e., as of 1 January 2025 or earlier), land users of (i) state or municipal land plots classified as land of residential and public development, industry, transport, communications, energy, defense and other designation, or (ii) land plots of any category (except for the land that forms part of a nature reserve fund) under their buildings or structures, will be able to apply directly to the cadastral registrar for changing the designated use of such land plots within the determined functional territory designation without the adoption of appropriate resolutions by a local or government authority.
- New requirements will be set for expropriation of land plots for public needs
- Starting from 24 July 2021, the Comprehensive Plan for Spatial Development, master plans and detailed territory plans will also determine the boundaries of territories comprising land plots needed for facility construction that may be subject to expropriation for public needs.
- Within such territories, (i) it will be prohibited (with certain exceptions) to transfer state and municipal land plots into private ownership, to delineate such land plots, to change their designated use for purposes not related to the construction of these facilities; (ii) land lease agreements, emphyteusis agreements, superficies agreements in respect of such land plots will be subject to mandatory inclusion of the provision on their obligatory unilateral termination by the lessor's decision if there is a need to use the land plot for the construction of such facilities, without compensation for damages suffered by the land user; (iii) renewal, extension of such agreements will be subject to mandatory inclusion of the above provision (with certain exceptions). These restrictions and encumbrances and their validity period (Law 711 states that this period may not exceed 10 years) will be determined by the relevant urban planning documentation.
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