Planning and construction are regulated by the Land Use and Building Act (MRL) and Land Use and Building Decree (MRA). Municipalities are responsible for master and local detailed planning in their own area.

Master plan

The master plan steers the municipality’s land use planning on a general level and over the long term. It may cover the entire municipality or a part of it, in which case the plan is accordingly referred to as the master plan or the partial master plan. The master plan is approved by the City Council.

Local detailed plan and detailed shore plan

A local detailed plan is a detailed land use plan. Local detailed planning is carried out by the municipality and the plans are approved by the City Council. Municipalities must prepare local detailed plans in accordance with the municipality’s development and the need to control land use activities.

A beach zone by the sea or other body of water may not be constructed in without a local detailed plan or such a legally effective master plan that specifically provides that the master plan or a part thereof must be used as one of the grounds for granting a building permit. A proposal for a detailed shore plan can also be prepared by the landowner.