Rule-Bending Keeps Fresno Sprawling

Despite a 2002 General Plan update aimed at curbing sprawl in the Central California city of Fresno, repeated zoning amendments have allowed hundreds of developments to push the city's edge farther out into the fringe.

"The City Council has routinely approved developer requests for exceptions to the plan or the city's zoning code, city records show.

Experts say such case-by-case tinkering with development plans only worsens sprawl.

From January 2003 through June 2008, the council approved about 400 zone changes or general plan amendments and denied just four.

The approvals included more than 300 projects around the city's edges -- in most cases allowing more intense development. The Bee analysis excluded zoning changes requested before 2003.

Over those 5 1/2 years, the city let developers convert more than 11 square miles around Fresno's edges for residential, commercial and other types of development. That includes two of the biggest projects approved in recent years: Copper River Ranch subdivision, which added a square mile to Fresno's northern tip, and the Fancher Creek development, which converted almost a square mile on the southeastern side."

Full Story: Fresno developments push the boundaries

Comments

Prepare for the AICP* Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $245

Essential Readings in Urban Planning

Planning on taking the AICP* Exam? Register for Planetizen's AICP * Exam Preparation Course to save $25.
Book cover of the Guide to Graduate Planning Programs 4th Edition

Thinking about Grad School?

The Planetizen Guide to Graduate Urban Planning Programs is the only comprehensive ranking and listing of graduate urban planning programs available.
Starting at $24.95
Rome grey gold tie

Tie one on to celebrate your city!

Choose from over 20 styles imprinted with detailed city or transit maps.
$44.95