A Brief History of Town Planning

Sujan Afi S


Plato once said that a city should be built to give its citizens proper security and happiness. Each one of us wants to live in a healthy atmosphere. Don’t you want security? Who doesn’t want to have a healthy situation to live, to work, or relax? Thus, we need to have proper planning of the towns and cities.

In this article, we will have a basic discussion on town planning.

What is Town Planning?

Town planning is the proper physical, social, economic, etc. planning of an urban environment. It involves the management of land resources. A planner has to manage the existing structures and also manage the new developments. He/she has to maintain the needs and desires of the builders and developers. Besides, he/she has to maintain the desires of the community also. If a town is properly planned then it can sustain the community, protect the environment, etc. Thus, it’s the best way to preserve the beauty of the past and create a sustainable environment for the future.

What are the Features of Town Planning?

There are several features of town planning. Let’s see some of them briefly.

  • Constructing new towns, cities, villages, etc.
  • Protection of historical or architectural buildings.
  • Assessing planning applications.
  • Protecting the natural and other public places.
  • Spreading educational awareness.
  • Working with the builders, developers, architects, etc.

The History of Town Planning

The history of town planning can be dated back to the third millennium BC. During the time of the Greek and Roman empire, city planning got quite a high level of popularity. At that time the focus on the design of the city was mainly given to protect the city from the invaders. The priority of public convenience came into later. The concept of the city centre was mainly developed around the residence of the king’s family and other aristocrats.

During the time of middle age, some European cities followed the concept of city planning of the Roman empire where there is the idea of ‘city centre’ in city planning.

Besides the concept of ancient town planning, the modern concept of town planning got developed in the United Kingdom during the time of the Industrial revolution. Due to the Industrial Revolution, the city centre was introduced as the economic centre to the people and people gathered in the city from surrounding rural areas. The economic and employment opportunity of the city attracted the surrounding rural people to live in the city to ensure a better living standard. The high growth rate of population in the city made the city very unorganised. The unorganised city planning along with the high growth of population in the city resulted in various health issues like overcrowding in the roads, water contamination, sanitation problem, air pollution, sewerage problem, etc. To overcome all these problems various laws were passed regarding town planning. Later it became important to provide various necessary amenities and services under town planning systems.

The foundation of the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA) is considered as the beginning of the professionalisation of urban planning in the era of modern town planning. Besides TCPA, the Town and Country Planning Act 1947 provides the basis for much of the contemporary planning system. The large-scale application of town planning is observed as an important characteristic of the world of post-Second World War.


Well, to describe the entire history of town planning in one blog will not do proper justice to the concept. Nevertheless, I have tried to cover the history in a few words. Still, if you have any problem, you can drop a mail at info@roodland.com. We will be more than happy to answer your queries. Your concerns are ours!


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