Land classification and development plan
Local councils (Gemeinderäte) allocate land in towns, cities and undeveloped surrounding areas for specific purposes. This procedure serves to ensure that towns and cities are developed according to the principles of sound urban planning, and to prevent rural areas falling victim to urban sprawl. Details of how land is allocated for development purposes are contained in local land allocation plans (Flächenwidmungspläne).
The development plan (Bebauungsplan) for each area is set by the local council on the basis of the land allocation plan. It stipulates how individual portions of the land available for development can be developed.
So that you can find out whether a given plot of land can be developed, the land allocation and development plans are made available for the public to view at the council offices (Gemeindeämter) If you live in Vienna, they can be viewed at office MA 21 (→ Vienna)German text.
The council offices will also be able to tell you where you can find printouts of the land allocation and development plans for your area. Copies of these printouts can be obtained in return for a contribution to production costs.
The local council is legally entitled to alter the land allocation and development plans.
In some cases, such changes may be accompanied by a moratorium on developing the area concerned, imposed for a period of three years. If an area is subject to a moratorium, new buildings, extensions to existing buildings and building conversions, along with any changes to the way land is sub-divided, may only be made under certain conditions, and must be approved in advance by the council's planning committee.
All draft proposals to change or set the land allocation and development plans for a given plot will be made available for the public to view at the council offices, in Vienna at office MA 21 (→ Vienna)German text for a period of six weeks.
Details of the period during which the relevant documents will be made available will be published on the official notice board at the local town hall or council offices. In Vienna, these details are published additionally on the official noticeboard of the town hall in the relevant city district, as well as in the Official Gazette (Amtsblatt) of the City of Vienna.
While the documents are on public view, citizens can submit their opinions on the proposals in writing to the relevant authorities. These submissions are then presented to the local council as part of the planning process. Submissions of this kind do not constitute a legal remedy.
Before you buy a plot, make sure you find out about any planned changes to the land allocation or development plans that might affect it.
Responsible for the content: Austrian Chamber of Civil-Law Notaries