Glossary
Access The ability of people to move around an area and reach places and facilities, including elderly and disabled people, those with young children and those encumbered with luggage or shopping.
Accessibility The ability of people to move around an area and reach places and facilities, including elderly and disabled people, those with young children and those encumbered with luggage or shopping.
Agriculture Includes horticulture, fruit-growing, seed growing, dairy-farming, live-stock breeding, the use of land as grazing land, or any other use of land where such other use is ancillary to any agricultural purposes; but does not include the use of any land attached to a building for the purpose of a garden to be used along with such building; and "agricultural" shall be construed accordingly
Amenities Something that contributes to the overall character or enjoyment of an area., for example open space, trees, parks, recreational grounds, play-grounds, water and electric supply, street lighting, sewerage, drainage, public works and utilities, services and conveniences historic buildings, peace and quiet ? and perhaps even local shops and other facilities.
Ancillary Use A subsidiary or secondary use closely associated with the main use of a building or plot of land (e.g. a parking area [including that in a garage] associated with a dwelling; a storage area/ yard associated with a main business use).
Appeal The process whereby a planning applicant can challenge an adverse decision, including a refusal of permission.
Applicant The person or body who applies for planning permission for development. Note that the applicant for planning permission does not have to be the landowner (though if this is so they must serve notice of the application on the landowner): they are often, for example, a commercial developer, or their agent.
Appropriate planning authority or planning authority A regional planning authority or local planning authority or new town development authority constituted under the Town and Country Planning Act.
Area of bad layout or obsolete development An area consisting of land which is badly laid out or of obsolete development, together with other lands contiguous or adjacent thereto, and which is defined by a development plan as an area of bad lay-out or obsolete development 
Arterial road  Any highway which connects towns with one another and facilitates movement of goods and people from town to another 
Basement floor or cellar floor The lowest storey of a building below or partly below the ground level. No part of the basement shall be constructed in the required set back spaces.
Board The Tamil Nadu Town and Country Planning Board constituted under the Town and Country Planning Act 
Building Line The line formed by the frontages of buildings along the street. The buildings are all behind this line ? the further back it is from the road the greater the space between buildings facing one another across the street. Building lines are used to ensure adequate separation between buildings and to define the pattern of development (for example, to make sure any infill development fits in with the character of its surroundings). 
Building operation Includes,erection or re-erection of a building or any part of it; roofing or re-roofing of a building or any part of a building or an open space; any material alteration or enlargement of any building which involves alteration or enlargement, as the case may be, of more than one-tenth of the extent of the cubical content of such building;
any material change in the use of a building including the conversion of the use of any part used for human habitation into a greater number of such parts; any such alteration of a building as is likely to affect its drainage or sanitary arrangements or affect in material respects its structural stability and construction of door opening on any street or land not belonging to the owner 
Building Regulations/ Control  In addition to planning controls (also called Development Control) there is an entirely separate system of control over the construction of buildings, to secure health, safety, energy conservation and access, called Building Regulations. They are administered mainly by Councils. Most developments that require planning permission will also need building regulations approval (although in addition some developments not requiring planning permission will still need building regulations approval).
Change of Use  A change in the way that land or buildings are used. Planning permission is usually necessary where the change of use is ?material? (i.e. significant from a planning point of view). Examples include changing the use of a building from one 'use class' to another (e.g. from a business use to residential use, or from a shop to a bank). Other less significant changes (e.g. from a travel agents to a shop) do not require permission. 
Circular A Government document that sets out Government advice and guidance, which local planning authorities and local authorities are expected to follow.
Circulars deal especially with the process by which Councils make decisions. There are a substantial number of Circulars of importance to planning.
Cluster A concentration, in a particular area, of competing and complementary businesses, whose location near to one another and to relevant government agencies (sometimes called ?co-location?) may enhance their competitive advantage. Clusters have been especially important for the growth and success of hi-tech companies in places like Cambridge and along the M4 corridor. Planning policies that encourage the emergence of clusters (e.g. by encouraging the co-location of interconnected businesses, for example in business parks or science parks) are seen to assist the economic development of the local area. 
Commerce The carrying on of any trade, business or profession, sale or exchange of goods of any type whatsoever and includes the running of, with a view to making profit, hospitals, nursing homes, infirmaries, educational institutions, and ?commercial? shall be construed accordingly 
Commercial use The use of any land or building or part thereof for purposes of commerce or for storage of goods, or as an office, whether attached to industry or otherwise 
Curtilage The area of land attached to and around a building, used with the building and within which the building is set (e.g. the garden and driveway areas of a house, the storage yard of a factory).
Designated Area Refers to an area which has been identified in a planning policy as deserving special treatment, often restricting developing which may harm its qualities: for example, a National Park, and Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, a Heritage, Coast, a Site of Special Scientific Interest, a Conservation Area. Permitted development is usually more restricted in such areas. See also Local Landscape Designation.
Developer The applicant, who applies for planning permission. In this sense the developer can be the land or building owner and/or a builder or someone likely to buy the land. Development The planning system influences ?development? 
Development The carrying out of all or any of the works contemplated in a regional plan, master plan, detailed development plan or a new town development plan prepared under the Town and Country Planning Act, and shall include the carrying out of building, engineering, mining, or other operations in, or over or under land, or the making of any material change in the use of any building or land
Development Authority A regional planning authority or a local planning authority or a new town development authority constituted under the Town and Country Planning Act. 
Development Control The process whereby the appropriate planning authority decides on planning applications. Development is controlled mainly in order to ensure that it accords with the Development Plan. When this is not up to date or comprehensive other material considerations may apply. Also called ?planning control?. The term ?development management? is gradually being introduced, to suggest a more proactive approach ? whereby the appropriate planning authority doesn?t just react, saying yes or no, to planning applications initiated by others, but seeks to be more positive in influencing development proposals.
Development Plan A set of policies relating to the development of land and set out in a document, which planning authorities / local authorities must take into account when making decisions on planning applications.
A plan for the development of re-development of the area within the jurisdiction of a planning authority and includes a regional plan, master plan, detailed development plan and a new town development plan prepared under the Town and Country Planning Act
Director The Director / Commissioner / Special Commissioner of Town and Country Planning appointed by the Government who is an officer of the Indian Administrative Service, Tamil Nadu cadre 
Dwelling A dwelling comprises accommodation sufficient to sustain day-to-day living and occupation by a person or household. Typically such accommodation would include washing and kitchen facilities and sleeping quarters, and some other living space. Commonly this is provided within a dwelling house or a flat but it can also be provided within a mobile home. A dwelling may also include land used for ancillary purposes (e.g. a garden, parking space).
Dwelling house  A dwellinghouse is a house that is not: a flat or subdivided into flats, in multiple occupation, or in mixed use.
Eco-towns Exemplar "green developments". They will meet the highest standards of sustainability, including low and zero carbon technologies and quality public transport systems. They will make use of brownfield land and surplus public sector land where practical and lead the way in design, facilities and services, and community involvement 
Elevation  The actual facade (or face) of a building, or a plan showing the drawing of a facade.
1. A drawing of the front, rear or side of a building (typically titled by the direction that part of the building faces; so the ?north? elevation drawing shows the exterior of the building facing northwards).
2. The ?main? or ?principal? elevation is typically the front fa?de (or face) of the building 
Enforcement (and Enforcement Notice) The procedures taken by a Planning authority / local authority to ensure that the decision on a planning application (or other special form of consent*) is abided by, or that development carried out without planning permission is brought under control. An Enforcement Notice is a legal letter/ document, issued by the authority, to the land owner/ occupier, which sets out the remedial action necessary to put things right (e.g. ceasing or removing the development) and the timescale for doing it. As with a refusal of planning permission, the owner can appeal against an Enforcement Notice. Each authority will have an ?enforcement team? who carry out this work. 
Engineering operations Includes the formation of or laying out of means of access to a road or the laying out of means of water-supply, drainage, sewerage or of electricity cables or lines or of telephone lines 
Existing Use The current use of a piece of land. Note that this need not be the authorized or permitted use. See lawful development or use.
Feasibility Study A study that checks whether a proposal or project (e.g. for development) is viable or achievable (given, for example, the planning, environmental, financial and economic constraints and risks).
Flat A dwelling formed by the horizontal subdivision of a building. Flats have more restricted permitted development rights than Dwelling houses (so that there are fewer instances where alterations can be made to a flat without needing planning permission).
Floor area Floor area means covered area of a building at any floor level including all wall thickness, balconies and ward-robes exceeding 60cm.
Floor Space Index Floor space index means the quotient obtained by dividing the total covered area on all floors by the site area 
Geographic Information System (GIS) A computer based system linking maps and other information, which in planning is used to store and present information relevant to planning applications and development plans. 
Government The Government of Tamil Nadu, India
Green Belt A Green Belt is an area of particularly strict restraint on urban development. In a Green Belt it is unusual to see new urban type development (e.g. new housing) granted planning permission (it requires very special circumstances). However, whilst Green Belts are meant to be permanent (to be altered only in exceptional circumstances) they are changed from time to time. Sometimes more land is included in a Green Belt, sometimes land is taken out and urban type development allowed (e.g. for a Park and Ride site, service road). In addition, small extensions and changes to the use of existing buildings are permitted, with appropriate safeguards.
The purposes of the Green Belt are basically to manage and order urban development, reduce urban sprawl (and the merging of towns into one another) and protect areas of countryside around the urban area. Once an urban area is consolidated, further planned urban growth has been used as a reason to require changes to the Green Belt boundary. The most important attribute of Green Belts is their openness; it is not necessary that the countryside included in a Green Belt is of high landscape quality. It is also important to distinguish Green Belts from greenfield land (which is simply any undeveloped land, usually farmland). Green Belts only occur around certain towns and cities 
Group Development Group Development means accommodation housed in two or more blocks buildings in a particular site irrespective of whether these structure are interconnected or not. Any interlink between these structures in terms of connecting corridors shall not be construed as making any two structures into one block. 
Habitable Room Any room used (or intended) for living, sleeping, cooking, or eating purposes. This excludes rooms or spaces such as bathrooms, toilets, service rooms, corridors, hallways, stairways, laundries, utility rooms or similar spaces.
Habitat An area of nature conservation interest. 
Hazardous Waste Wastes that have the potential to cause harm to human health or the environment.
Highway Has the same meaning as defined under National Highways Act, 1956, ( Central Act XLVIII of 1956)
A publicly maintained road, together with footways and verges.
Height Limits The height of a building (or an extension) is measured from the ground level immediately next to it. If the ground is uneven it is measured from the highest part of the surface.
Building an extension on a house requires planning permission if (among other things) the extension exceeds certain height limits; However, there are different limits for different circumstances; for example, for loft conversions and dormer windows, especially in a Conservation Area, National Park or Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty., heritage area, areas near aerodromes etc., In particular circumstances the situation can be quite complicated.
Incidental Open Space (or Landscaping) A small strip of open space (e.g. a roadside verge) that provides amenity, contributing to the enjoyment/ appreciation of an area or the setting of a development, but of little or no recreational or other value.
Incidental Use A use of land or buildings which isn't essential to the main uses of the accommodation. For example in the case of a dwelling house, the use of a new building/ structure put up in the garden as a a shed, a pet cage or kennel, a greenhouse, sauna cabin, swimming pool, tennis court, garage or place to store a caravan, in the curtilage of the house, would probably be counted as incidental; though one used as a living room, bedroom, kitchen or bathroom - i.e. uses vital to the everyday requirements of a house - would probably not. The importance of what is incidental is that, in the case of a dwelling house, many kinds of buildings and structures used for incidental uses do not require planning permission (though this will depend on such things as their height and whether they are associated with a listed building or in a Conservation Area, National Park or Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, heritage area, religious places, area near by aerodromes etc.,). On the other hand, buildings used for uses not regarded as incidental will require permission*.
Industrial use Includes the use of any land or building or part thereof for purposes of industry
Industry Includes the carrying on of any manufacturing process as defined in the Factories Act, 1948 ( Central Act LXIII of 1948) and ?industrial? shall be construed accordingly 
Infrastructure Basic services necessary for development to take place, for example, roads, electricity, sewerage, water, education and health facilities. It may also include the ?social infrastructure? that is necessary to service development and provide sustainable communities, and which would not normally be provided by the private market without special arrangements or incentives (e.g. schools, hospitals and other health facilities, open space and affordable housing) and possibly non-physical support services such as local advice and training. The provision of infrastructure by developers (or financial contributions towards its provision) is often dealt with in Planning Obligations.
Land Includes benefits to arise out of a land, and things attached to the earth or permanently fastened to anything attached to the earth. Land In planning, refers to both the site and the buildings and other structures on it. 
Landscaping 1. Soft landscaping: the planting of trees, shrubs, areas of grass and flowers etc. and/ or altering the contours of the ground, around a building or on a site.
2. Hard landscaping: the hard surfaces or enclosures or other man-made features within the open parts of a site (e.g. a parking forecourt or courtyard). Can also include water features. 
Land Compensation Provisions for the compensation of land compulsorily acquired in the public interest.
Land bank The stock land with planning permissions but where development has yet to take place. The land bank can be of land for minerals, housing or any other use.
Layout The way buildings, routes and open spaces are placed or laid out on the ground in relation to each other. 
Land Use The main activity carried out on a piece of land e.g. agriculture, residence, business. Land uses are often defined according to the type of building or land they occupy e.g. housing, shops, offices, factories, farms 
Licences and Permits In addition to planning controls which regulate proposals to change the physical arrangement or use of land (e.g. new buildings, new land uses) before they happen (i.e. development) there is a whole host of other regulations which control the subsequent use and management of land and buildings, and which require some kind of permission, namely, a licence or a permit from the local authority. The purpose of these controls is to prevent harm to the public or the environment
Light Industry An industrial use which could operate in a residential area without causing a nuisance by virtue of noise, vibration, smell, fumes, dust etc. 
Local Authority A term that covers the different types of local Council: The Municipal Corporations of Chennai, or Madurai or Coimbatore or Tiruchirappalli or Salem or Tirunelveli or Vellore or Tiruppur; or A Municipal council constituted under the Tamil Nadu District Municipalities Act 1920 ( Tamil Nadu Act V of 1920; or A Township constituted under the Tamil Nadu Districts Municipalities Act, 1920 ( Tamil Nadu act V of 1020), or the Tamil Nadu Panchayats Act, 1958 ( Tamil Nad Act XXXV of 1958) or under any other law for the time being in force, or a township constituted under the Township Acts( Tamil Nadu Act XI of 1940, Tamil Nadu Act XVI of 1954 or Tamil Nadu Act XXV of 1954) or a Panchayat Union Council or a Panchayat constituted under the Tamil Nadu Panchayats Act, 1958 ( Tamil Nadu Act XXXV of 1958) term ?local planning authority? is often used when referring to a local authority?s town and country planning responsibilities 
Local Planning Authority  The local government body (local authority) responsible for formulating town and country planning policies (included in a Local Development Framework), making decisions on planning and other regulatory measures. 
Major street A main street connecting different localities 
Master Plan  A type of planning brief which outlines the preferred development for a large site or area, and the overall approach to its layout and design. The Master Plan provides detailed guidance for subsequent planning applications.
Material Change of Use A change of the use of a site or building which is significant from a planning point of view and so normally requires planning permission (e.g. because it may have an impact on the environment or the community). 
Means of access Any means of passage, whether private or public, for vehicles o for pedestrians and includes any street; 
Mezzanine floor An intermediate floor between any two floors above the ground level with area of mezzanine not exceeding 1/3 of the area of that floor
Multistoried Building Multistoried Building means a building exceeding 4 floors including ground floor or 15 meters or more in height 
National Highway Any highway declared to be a national highway under section 2 of the National Highways Act,1956 ( Central Act XLVII of 1956)
Navigational Canal Any waterway or canal or any other source of a waterway or canal for the public carriage of persons, animals or goods by means of yachts or boats 
New Town A newly planned settlement, built under specific circumstances favorable to development of Industry, trade on a level speed when compared to other areas and having high potentials to arrest migration to major towns and cities. The Areas are declared and constituted under the Town and Country Planning Act. They would provide employment for their residents and a full range of local facilities and services. Noted New Towns are Hozur in Krishnagiri District, Kurichi in Coimbatore District, Navalpattu in Tiruchirappalli, Maraimalai Nagar and Mamallapuram in Chengal Pattu District. 
Node A place (e.g. a road junction) where routes (e.g. streets) cross and there is a high level of activity (e.g. with shops and cafes). 
Notice An official (legal) document served on a landowner by a local planning authority / local authority requiring them to take steps to clean up a piece of land (including any buildings) when its condition is harming the amenity of the local area. The Notice sets out the steps to be taken to bring the development to order or to remove such development for reasons of safety of life and property.
Stop notices are issued to stop further proceeding in any development of land or building when it is found that such development is un authorized / deviated to the sanctioned plan. 
Occupier Any person for the time being paying or liable to pay to the owner the rent or any portion of the rent of the land or building or part of the same in respect of which the word is used or damages on account of the occupation of such land or building or part or may be a rent free occupant.
Off- and On street Parking Off-street parking is provided not on the roadside, e.g. in car parks, lock-up garages.
On-street parking is parking on the roadside. Both forms of parking are often subject to parking restrictions (e.g. relating to times and charges).
Open Space All land which is free from buildings but is not used for agriculture or forestry and which has some public value, including public landscaped areas, streets, playing fields, parks and play areas, and also including areas of water such as rivers, canals, lakes and reservoirs. Open spaces can offer opportunities for transport and travel, sport and recreation or can provide a visual amenity. The term green space is often used for open space which is a haven for wildlife. Various other distinctions are made: e.g. between public open space (to which the public have access) and private open space (to which they don't, because the land is privately owned); between amenity open space (landscaped areas whose main function is to enhance the appearance of an area) and recreational open space (open land used for sport and informal outdoor activities like play); and between formal (e.g. parks) and informal open space (e.g. roadside verges, small timber belts). 
Owner The person for the time being receiving or entitled to receive, whether on his own account or as agent, trustee, guardian, manager or receiver for another person, or for any religious or charitable purposes, the rent or profits of the property in connection with which the word is used 
Parking Standards Development Plans identify maximum levels of parking for broad classes of development exceeding a certain extent of area. 
Perspective A drawing or illustration of, for example, streets and buildings (showing their height, width and depth) giving the view as it would be seen by the human eye from a particular point. 
Phasing (or Phased Development) The staggering or phasing of development into manageable parts; for example, so that the rate of housing development keeps pace with the provision of infrastructure (e.g. roads) and other services (e.g. shops and work places) and utilities
Plan : A report which sets out actions for the future, for a particular area (e.g. a neighborhood, a District, a region). Drawing (for example, submitted as part of a planning application) showing a two-dimensional representation of a building, site or area; often provided on a map base. A building plan will show a slice through a building from a bird's eye angle, revealing the layout of rooms, stairwells, lifts, etc.. 
Planning Obligations (Contributions) When granting planning permission, as well as imposing conditions on the permission, the planning authority / local authority may require that the applicant enters into a legal agreement Planning Obligations can go much further than planning conditions (especially dealing with matters off the development site). However, like conditions, their scope is circumscribed by law and by policy. In general Planning Obligations must be:
? relevant to planning
? necessary, to make the proposed development
? directly related to the proposed development, in terms of geography and function
? fairly and reasonably related to the proposed development, in terms of scale and kind, and
? reasonable.
Planning Permission The formal approval given for development by the planning authority / local authority wherever delegated with such powers.
This permission is subject to planning conditions to ensure it is acceptable and carried out as intended. When granted, the applicant must substantially commence the development that has been permitted within three. Once a permission has expired it can be applied for again but there is no presumption that it will be granted because of a previous approval.
The permission normally ?attaches? to the land rather than to the applicant ? so any development given permission will need the permission of the land owner to carry it out, but also if the land is sold the benefit of the permission goes to the new land owner. 
Planning area  Any area declared to be a regional planning area, local planning area or a site for a new town under the Tamil Nadu Town and Country Planning Act
Planning System The arrangements - procedures and organizations ? through which the government and planning authorities / local authorities carry out their legal responsibilities for town and country (spatial) planning. 
Plot A continuous portion of land held in one ownership other than land used, allotted or restored for any public purpose or any purpose connected with local administration on by any local authority 
Plot Coverage The extent to which the plot is covered with a building or structure and this is expressed as the percentage of the ratio of built up area to the plot area at any level of the building.
Plot Ratio