Developers looking to build on vantage points, promontories, and other plots of high elevation land in Phuket must follow new environmental regulations laid out by the government that restricts land use and building heights.
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment issued the regulations that prevent structures in Phuket from being built on land with a gradient or slope of 35 percent and above. Original laws prevented buildings on land with a gradient or slope of 50 percent.
Another new regulation limits buildings to being no more than 6 meters high if it is located on an area that is elevated more than 40 meters. In addition to this, any building situated in an area elevated below 40 meters cannot be taller than 40 meters.
“Who are the winners and losers for development? Hillside condominium projects certainly will become more difficult as will cliff-hugging hotels. It is clear in the new regulations is a more determined focus by the Thai government on slope control and green areas which looks to create a more challenging regime for property and hotels developers in land parcels that have significant terrain,” says Bill Barnett, Managing Director of C9 Hotelworks.
Any project located on land with a slope between 25 and 35 per cent will be required to allocate 70 percent of the space to green spaces and isn’t allowed to remove large boulders and trees. Cut and fill for the development will be limited to 1 meter while building footprints are not allowed to exceed 90 square meters.
The Initial Environmental Examination process will be waived for developments with 29 units or less, according to the ministry. Projects of this size will only require a construction permit. Developments with more than 80 units will still be required to obtain an Environmental Impact Assessment.
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