Revue Juridique de l'Environnement


One Year of Urban Planning Law and Living conditions Volume 49, issue 1, March 2024


Professeur agrégé de droit public

Université Toulouse Capitole, Institut Maurice Hauriou

Professeur de droit public

Membre de l’Institut Fédératif de Recherche sur les Transitions Juridiques

Université de Pau et des Pays de l’Adour

In 2023, urban planning will continue to be influenced by the development of the Zero Net Land Use (ZNLU) concept, which is already having an impact, even though it will not be implemented all over the territory until 2050. A decree of the 26th of December clarifies the definition of wasteland in the RNU. The increase in the number of inter-municipal bodies and the increase in the number of PLUi replacing PLUs have led to situations that are sometimes unsolvable and require validation laws. The constitutional Council has had to deal with this issue in an interesting way. Finally, the proliferation of "architectural or landscape recommendation documents", which are not provided for in the Code, has led the Council of State to adopt rules on these documents. With regard to urban planning authorisations, the Council of State was able to clarify the rules governing requests to modify a project within the time limit for examining the authorisation, but also to state for the first time that letters granting an extension of the time limit for examination are not subject to appeal. In two other cases, the Council of State also defined the limits of the administrative authority’s discretion with regard to the integration of photovoltaic projects into the environment and the issue of refusal on public health grounds.

This year is not an exception: the main legislative and regulatory provisions related to the protection of the living conditions are rooted in the outdoor advertising Law. Several decrees have been adopted in the end of 2023 on that matter, as well as a provision in the midst of the Climate and Resilience Law (2021). The litigation focuses on the establishment of wind turbines in a way the Legislator has paid lip service into the Law related to the acceleration of renewable energy production, the need to take into account the visual overload that an excessive number wind turbines could generate.