Special consideration zones

All phases and processes, based on the Planning and Building Act, in varying degrees generate demand for geological information. For most people who work with planning it is about politics and to take into account areas in the processes of reaching a decision. The planner works rarely with information that directly is defined by the Planning and Building Act, but more towards the overall geological theme that provides enough information so that it can be used to solve municipal planning tasks.

When planning processes are discussed, they are expressed more like subject areas and not as plan types or land-use categories. Typical subject areas, or policy areas if you will, can be security, resources, landscape and so on. To safeguard and protect important areas in planning within such matters we have in the Planning and Building Act has a new planning tools; Special consideration zones. These zones can be made visible on land-use maps, showing areas where further usage must be assessed and possibly set restrictions on its use.

Considerations zones has the advantage and strength because they can be used regardless of which land-use objectives the area is allocated to. In this way, consideration zones provides a flexible instrument in planning. These zones constitute a spatial demarcation for a gravel occurrence for example, and thus highlighting the areas where other considerations must be addressed than the land-use objective purpose provides guidance on. Another important element is that consideration zones will provide developers a greater degree of predictability, as they will be familiar with the area's possibilities and limitations before private planning commences.

According to the Planning and Building Act, consideration zones shall only be used in "necessary extent". This means in that is not given that consideration zones can be utilized for all interests which may affect the usage of an area, but limited to the interests of significance for project. By too wide use of consideration zones there is a risk of diluting the remedy, as well as the danger of a confusing planning map.

At NGU we have been concerned about how the expertise at NGU should be conveyed to illuminate various policy areas in municipal planning. This problem still applies in the highest degree. NGU has a number of expert groups who each have skills acquired over many years. Expert groups have developed their own terminology and performing their academic excellence and professionalism. The planning environments in Norway should be able to utilize this expertise and we believe that the Map Browser "Geology of my municipality" is a good place to obtain some of this knowledge. In this Map Browser we have therefore categorized by subject areas rather more specialized geological scientific theme. These are Landscape, Resources and Security.