The National Physical Planning Department (NPPD) is the successor to the Town and Country Planning Department, which was established under the provisions of the Town and Country Planning Ordinance No.13 of 1946. The amendment to the Ordinance by Act No.49 of 2000 amplified the scope of the provision in the original enactment to formulate a National Physical Planning Policy and prepare the National Physical Plan. The change of the title of the Department came in this light. Since the year 2000 the main activities of the Department revolved around the National Level Planning and the Regional and Local Level Plans based on the National Physical Plan. The Department also continued with the residual activities of the former Town and Country Planning Department particularly in Sacred Area Planning and development activities.

An analysis of the Act read in conjunction with the Urban Development Authority Law (amendment of 2000) indicates that the Department is accountable for the planning of the whole country at National, Regional and Local levels whereas it is directly responsible for "Physical Planning' at National Level. It is also responsible to arrange planning at regional level (through the Regional Planning Committees) and local level (through Chairmen of Local Authorities and the Urban Development Authority).


Leader in Planned, Sustained and Adored land


To formulate national physical policies, plans and strategies and to ensure and monitor the implementation of such national policies and plans through regional and local plans with the object of promoting and regulating integrated planning of economic, social, physical and environmental aspects of land and territorial waters  of Sri Lanka.


  • To formulate a National Physical Planning Policy
  • To prepare a National Physical Plan
  • To prepare Physical Planning Guidelines to be adopted by the Regional or Local Physical Planning Authorities.
  • To prepare any Regional or Local Physical Plan where the Regional or Local Planning Authority fails in, or on requests.
  • To assist Provincial Councils in the preparation of Regional Physical Plans
  • To make recommendations to the Inter Ministerial Coordinating Committee on Physical Plans
  • To review and examine, periodically the National Physical Planning Policy, Plan and the Strategies in Operation
  • To monitor the implementation of the National Physical Plan
  • To assist the Council and the Inter Ministerial Coordinating Committee in all activities

The following are the six key tasks that the Department is obliged to engage as per the provisions of the Act, and have become timely engagements:

  • Amendments to the National Physical Planning Policy and the Plan
  • Amendment and the Preparation of Regional / Provincial Physical Plans
  • Updating, Preparation and Implementation of Plans for Small Towns
  • Preparation and Implementation of Development Plans for areas that are of National Significance
  • Updating and Implementation of Development Plans for Sacred Areas
  • Technical Assistance for Physical Developments of Religious Places and Institutions