The Council of Oulu Region is responsible for drawing up regional land use plan that sets out a framework for all local land use planning and systematic community development in the whole region. The regional land use plan is drawn up through participatory planning procedure, which give municipalities, organizations and local residents a chance to get involved in the planning processes that affect them. According to Finnish land use and building legislation, regional land use plan is ratified by state authorities (Ministry of the Environment) while communal land use plans, master plans and city/town plans, are ratified by municipal councils.
The Assembly of Regional Council approved the Northern Ostrobothnia Regional Land Use Plan on 11.6.2003 and it was ratified by the Ministry of the Environment on 17.2.2005. The Plan came into force on 25.8.2006 with decision of the High Administrative Court of Justice and replaced the former regional land use plan validated in 1993. The Northern Ostrobothnia Regional Land Use Plan is aimed at creating balanced and vital community structures, promoting welfare equally and strengthening Oulu region´s status both nationally and internationally.
Regional Land Use Plan is a strategic tool which brings national land use guidelines to local level land use planning. Reservations made in the Regional Land Use Plan are general in nature and leave plenty of scope for municipalities to resolve local land use issues. As a new feature, the Plan delineates development zones which promote joint master plans and other effective solutions that cannot be developed at the local level alone.
Municipal land use planning authorities are legally bound to take regional land use plan into account and promote its implementation. Usually, regional land use plan may concern private landowners only through building restrictions implicit in some traffic and recreational area reservations.
- Northern Ostrobothnia Land Use Plan summary
- Northern Ostrobothnia Land Use Plan legend and explanation
- Northern Ostrobothnia Land Use Map (in Finnish)
The Location possibilities for a new nuclear power plant are being investigated through the EIA and land use planning procedure in 2008-09. In Northern Ostrobothnia, land use planning has been initiated in Hanhikivi area in Pyhäjoki and Raahe municipalities. Planning includes a regional plan, local master plans and detailed plans.
Hanhikivi regional landuse plan for nuclear power plant:
- Summary of the participation and assessment scheme
- Ministry of the Environment: Land use plans for a nuclear power plant in Simo and Pyhäjoki