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Design by-laws

By means of by-laws the municipality can, for specific parts of the area under its jurisdiction, pass regulations to ensure the quality of the exterior design of structures. The legal basis for the formulation of a design by-law is section 81 of the Hessen Building Code (HBO). The design regulations can take the form of an independent design by-law, or be integrated in a legal zoning plan.
In Frankfurt/Main the design stipulations are for the most part integrated into the legal zoning plans. For the municipality as a whole, however, five independent design by-laws are also legally binding. These design by-laws were compiled for the following areas:

  • Höchst old town
  • Sachsenhausen old town
  • Bahnhofsviertel district
  • "Fressgass" and adjoining streets
  • The buildings on the northern bank of the River Main
  • The cathedral and Römer area

A design by-law regulates the design of buildings (for example the shape of the roof or the materials used), plots of land (for example enclosures, greening) and advertisement space. The design by-law stipulates the design framework that new buildings must adhere to. By way of contrast with a preservation by-law, the design by-law makes precise stipulations with regard to the design of structures that are in the interest of a harmonious urban and architectural overall appearance.


Section from planAS, areas of application with regard to legally binding design statutes, © Stadtplanungsamt Frankfurt am Main

All the City of Frankfurt’s legally binding design by-laws can be viewed in the planning information section of the Planning Department attached to the Municipal Planning Authority.
Furthermore, you can download and print out all legally binding design by-laws and the attendant documents, as well as all areas of validity and procedural data in the list by clicking on it in the planning law digital information system planAS. In the planAS the areas of scope covered by the legally binding preservation by-laws appear as light green spaces, and those in the compilation procedure as light green hatched areas.