Enforcing Building Set Backs as a Viable Strategy for an Emerging City

Abdulazeez Umar Raji, Umar Ahmed Attah


For any emerging city to grow into a healthy and safe city, development guidelines and regulations which serve as a vital strategy should be considered and be adhered to. Most importantly the town and country planning laws which are purposely designed to regulate various development aspects that includes, zoning practices, occupancy type building height, as well as building setbacks among many other regulations, depending on the problems of a particular locality. Suleja in the last three decades has rapidly experienced increase in size with numerous number of buildings springing up, largely as a result of its proximity to the new Federal Capital Territory; unfortunately most of the buildings were haphazardly placed with less or little regard to local planning regulations. This paper is aimed to explore how non adherence to building setbacks affects the immediate dwelling units of an area. A field survey and oral interviews were used in three core areas of Suleja to evaluate the level of non-adherence of building setbacks, and its resultant effects. The research findings identified several problems arising from non-compliance to building setbacks regulations, which includes poorly lightened and ventilated interiors of dwelling units, lack of access roads linking buildings with main roads, lack of outdoor spaces for parking vehicles and unsafe environment which all leads to a poor city growth.


building setbacks; building regulations; congestion; emerging city; planning authorities

Full Text:



1. Ahianba, J. E., Dimuna, K. O., & Okogun, G. R. A. (2008). Built Environment Decay and Urban Health in Nigeria. Journal for Human Ecology and Management, 23(3), 259–265.

[Google Scholar]

2. City of Chesapeake, Virginia. (2007, August 28). Design Guidelines for the City of Chesapeake. Retrieved from http://www.cityofchesapeake.net/government/City-Departments/Departments/Planning-Department/Planning-Library/plans_studies/design-guidelines.htm

3. Fisher, J. (2006). The Basis of Building Setbacks and % Lot Coverage. Retrieved from https://goo.gl/m9Y12Q.

4. Gallo, C., Sala, M., & Sayigh, A. M. M. (1998). Architecture Comfort and Energy. Oxford: Elsevier.

[Google Scholar]

5. Nwaka, G. I. (2005). The Urban Informal Sector in Nigeria: Towards Economic Development, Environmental Health, and Social Harmony. Global Urban Development Magazine, 1(1), 1-11.

[Google Scholar]

6. Oduwaye, L. (2006). Citizenship Participation in Environmental Planning and Management in Nigeria: Suggestions. Journal for Human Ecology, 20(1), 43–48.

[Google Scholar]

7. Oko, J. O. (2010, September). Sustainable design, planning and policy considerations for the prevention of slum in emerging cities and megacities. Paper presented at the Archibuilt Forum 2010, Abuja, Nigeria.

8. Pasold, L. (2012, February 6). Paris Buildings: A Brief History. Retrieved from https://parispropertygroup.com/blog/2012/paris-buildings-a-brief-history

9. Samadi, Z. H. Hasbullah, M. N. (2008). The enhancement of spaces in between buildings as urban recreation development. In ECER Regional Conference Paper (pp. 1–13). Retrieved from https://www.academia.edu/781829/Enchancement_of_Space_in_Between_Buildings_for_Urban_Recreation_Development

[Google Scholar]

10. Town and Country Planning Law (Nigeria, Lagos). Retrieved May 10, 2017, from http://www.lawnigeria.com/LawsoftheFederation/NIGERIAN-URBAN-AND-REGIONAL-PLANNING-ACT.html

Article Metrics

Metrics Loading ...

Metrics powered by PLOS ALM


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2017 Abdulazeez Umar Raji, Umar Ahmed Attah

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.