Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1345450
 
 

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Historical Overview of the American Land Use System: A Diagnostic Approach to Evaluating Governmental Land Use Control


John R. Nolon


Pace University School of Law

2006

Pace Environmental Law (PELR) Review, Vol. 23, 2006

Abstract:     
This article describes how the American land use system has evolved to address recent environmental and economic development problems. It begins by tracing the history of the legal system used in the United States to control private sector land development and demonstrates how it achieved the flexibility needed to respond to modern challenges. The American land use system has paid a price for this flexibility: it is not a coherent whole, but rather a fragmented mosaic of legal influences. Impressive examples of cohesion are cited that suggest a strategic approach to reforming the system so that it can become an effective instrument for achieving sustainable development.
Despite its flaws, this legal system demonstrates how federal, state, and local governments can use an impressive array of legal techniques and practices to solve environmental and economic development problems. As such, it provides a useful model for evaluating other countries’ land use regimes. To encourage such comparisons, the article ends with a checklist of the characteristics of the American system and of the tools and techniques it employs.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 33

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Date posted: February 24, 2009 ; Last revised: November 4, 2009

Suggested Citation

Nolon, John R., Historical Overview of the American Land Use System: A Diagnostic Approach to Evaluating Governmental Land Use Control (2006). Pace Environmental Law (PELR) Review, Vol. 23, 2006. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1345450

Contact Information

John R. Nolon (Contact Author)
Pace University School of Law ( email )
78 North Broadway
White Plains, NY 10603
United States
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