The aim of the plan is to carry out activities in order to ensure the complete adaptation of Eurocode standards in the system of regulatory enactments governing construction and improve the national construction standardisation system of Latvia, fulfilling the Commission Recommendation 2003/887/EC on the implementation and use of Eurocodes in buildings and load-bearing structures.
The plan provides for translating 17 standards, 31 standard amendment and 5 standard supplements and registering them in the LVS system, drawing up national annexes to 26 standards, as well as developing amendments to laws and regulations, ensuring design in compliance with Eurocode standards, and informing the professionals of design of building structures about the specific features of design compliant with Eurocode standards.
New Construction Law
The new Construction Law was adopted by Saeima on 9 July 2013 and came into force on 1 October 2014.
The Construction Law (Law) has been developed with an aim to create modern legal regulation of construction process which would harmonise national legislation with EU laws and regulations and promote the development of construction sector, as well as promote the possibilities of the public to participate in the decision-making process, ensuring maximum protection of the person who proposed the construction and public interests, which is based on the essence of the Law — construction is the fulfilment of territory planning.
Unlike the currently effective Construction Law, this Law determines a different construction process:
- a construction permit is issued, based on a construction intention application and a building design in a minimum composition which has been drawn up in accordance with the requirements of regulatory enactments governing the use and building of territory; hence, a building authority will not have to issue an architectural-planning assignment, which in its merits duplicates building regulations.
- depending on the level of complexity of planned construction and the potential impact on the environment, a construction permit will be issued with conditions. Conditions will include requirements for building design and necessary agreements, as well as requirements for commencing construction works.
- construction works may be commenced after the building authority will have made a note in the construction permit regarding the fulfilment of requirements laid down therein and the construction permit will have become indisputable.
Depending on the construction intention, the building authority will take a decision within the following periods:
- within one month — issue of a construction permit or a refusal to issue a construction permit;
- within 14 days — acceptance of a construction intention, making a note in the certification card, or a refusal to make a note;
- within seven days — acceptance of a construction intention, making a note in the explanatory memorandum of the construction intention, or a refusal to make a note.
The Law determines that the building authority shall make a note in the construction permit regarding the execution of the design conditions included therein within 15 working days and regarding the execution of conditions concerning the commencement of construction works — within 5 working days.
Informing the Public during the Construction Process
Since the period for contesting the construction permit is one month, the Law provides for additional measures on informing the public. The duty to inform the public is imposed on both local governments and authorities which fulfil the functions of a building authority, as well as on the commissioning party (the person who proposed the construction).
The local government and authorities which fulfil the functions of a building authority shall:
1) upon receiving an application of construction intention, publish information regarding the place of implementation of the construction intention and the type of construction on the website of the local government on the Internet and in the Construction Information System within three working days;
2) notify the public of the decision taken while examining the application of a construction intention, publishing information (place of implementation of the construction intention, type of construction and the day on which a construction permit or a refusal to issue a construction permit comes into force) on the website of the local government on the Internet and in the Construction Information System within three working days.
These measures on informing the public are mandatory.
The commissioning party, in turn, is obliged to inform the public regarding the received construction permit within five days by installing a construction board on the plot of land on which construction is permitted. Apart from that, the commissioning party may inform such owners of immovable properties individually in writing regarding the received construction permit, whose immovable properties are adjacent to the plot of land on which construction is permitted These activities are informative in nature.
If the construction of an object which may have crucial impact (smell, noise, vibration or other type of pollution), but which is not subject to the environmental impact assessment, is proposed next to a residential or public building, the building authority shall have a duty to ensure public discussion of a construction intention and take a decision on the construction intention of the proposed object solely after such discussion. The local government may include other cases, when the public discussion of a construction intention has to be organised, in binding regulations as well.
The public discussion of a construction intention shall not be organised, if the territory in which the structure is intended to be constructed has a valid detailed plan or the implementation of such construction intention requires drawing up a detailed plan.