About Physical Planning

Background

The initial physical planning practice was meant to address public health issues caused by poor provision of urban infrastructure and services that resulted in serious sanitation, pollution, health and social ills.

In Malawi, physical planning came with the British colonialists who prepared the first street plan for Blantyre.  The origin of the Department is a Town Planning Section that was established in the then Public Works Department in 1962.  In 1968 a Physical Planning Division was established in the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) to deal with rural development matters.  In 1971, the Physical Planning Division of OPC was amalgamated with the Town Planning Section of Ministry of Works and Supplies to become the Department of Town and Country Planning under OPC.

Through a functional review in 1986 the Department became Department of Housing and Physical Planning having three divisions of Housing, Town Planning and Country Planning.  It later became part of Ministry of Physical Planning and Surveys while Housing become a ministry on its own.  Further functional review by Government created the Ministry of Lands, Housing, Physical Planning and Surveys which comprised departments of Lands and valuation, Surveys, Physical Planning, Housing and Buildings.