Abu Dhabi Safety and Security Planning Manual (SSPM)

As a lead consultant SGW are fully compliant with the Abu Dhabi Safety & Security Planning Manual (SSPM).

The guide works in line with Urban Planning’s suite of regulations, policies and guidelines. The purpose of the Manual is to ensure that safety and security are embedded in development proposals. The SSPM includes a series of safety and security planning and design principles that are bespoke to Abu Dhabi. It ensures that neither the development community, nor those tasked with safety and security enforcement, lose sight of the overarching principles of the Urban Planning vision.

The SSPM contains eight overarching principles guided by a vision for safe and secure communities, and are universal, regardless of the type, size or location of a development.


All projects must implement the Abu Dhabi Safety and Security Planning and Design Principles. These principles are applied carefully by SGW however, they are to be applied according to context. Projects requiring a UPC planning approval will automatically be subject to a safety & security review as part of the development review process. Through a corresponding Decision Support Tool at the pre-planning stage, the project is identified as ‘Low Priority’ or ‘High Priority’. Projects that pass immediately to the Municipalities for Building Permitting will require a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the Abu Dhabi Safety & Security Working Group. If they are identified as High Priority, they will be required to submit additional deliverables as part of the municipal planning and Building Permit Process. The High Priority projects are typically larger in size and include land uses that attract particular security risks,

The following policies are used by SGW for every project, to guide in the decision-making process and to ensure positive implementation outcomes.

Policy Statement 1 – ‘Planning Culture’

Community safety and protective security shall be a core planning consideration in all new developments.

Policy Statement 2 – ‘Risk Assessment’

Community safety and protective security arrangements, in new and existing developments, must be fit-for-purpose, appropriate and proportionate to the risks.

Policy Statement 3 – ‘Balancing Act’

Decisions relating to community safety and protective security must be balanced with other development objectives.

Policy Statement 4 – ‘Working Together’

Appropriate advice, information sharing, transparency and rigour must be present to support community safety and protective security decision-making.

Policy Statement 5 – ‘Owner Pays’

Costs associated with community safety and protective security fall where responsibility for safety and security lies: with the owner. The vision for the manual is to ensure quality of life and reflect the Emirate’s unique identity.

Abu Dhabi Safety and Security Planning Manual (SSPM)