Self Service Urbanism

Research on the City Statute - Brazil


Volpi Urbane did research on the City Statute and best practices projects in Brazil.


‘The City Statute (Federal Law Number 10.257), approved in 2001, is justifiably highly regarded in many countries throughout the world. The unique qualities of the Statute are not confined to the high quality of its legal and technical drafting. It is widely regarded as a crowning social achievement, which took shape gradually in Brazil over a number of decades. The history of the City Statute is basically an example of how a large number of stakeholders from different sectors of society—citizens’ movements, professional bodies, academic institutions, trade unions, researchers, NGOs, parliamentary representatives and progressive town mayors—pursued a concept of this type for many years and saw it come to fruition in the face of adverse circumstances. The Statute seeks to bring together, in a single text, a series of key themes related to democratic government, urban justice and environmental equilibrium in cities. It also highlights the gravity of the urban question, ensuring that urban issues occupy a prominent position on the national political agenda of Brazil—now a predominantly urbanised country that was essentially rural until relatively recent times.


The City Statute deals with much more than urban land. With its holistic approach, the law covers the following areas: guidelines and precepts concerned with urban planning and plans; urban management; state, fiscal and legal regulation (particularly referring to landed property and real estate); tenure regularisation of informal properties; and social participation in the elaboration of plans, budgets, complementary laws and urban management, PPPs, etc. Bringing previously existing piecemeal laws together under the aegis of the City Statute, with the addition of new instruments and concepts, helps to facilitate a better understanding of the urban question. Most importantly, the Statute has led to the introduction of a genuinely national approach to dealing with the problems of cities.’


Pakhuis De Zwijger - City Embassy

Pakhuis De Zwijger - de energieke samenleving

Commissioned by:

Ministry of Interior and Kingdom Relations

Ministry of Infrastucture and Environment