Land Use Policy

November 12, 2015, 7am PST
In a new paper, researchers find that land use regulations in cities have effectively created a "zoning tax," which primarily impacts the poor and renting class.
Market Urbanism
Blog post
February 27, 2012, 5am PST

Last Thursday I debated the merits of smart growth with ‘Anti-planner’ Randal O'Toole at a community forum in Langley, a rapidly-growing suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia. A recording of the Debate and presenters' slide shows are available at www.southfraser.net/2012/02/smart-growth-debate-media.htmlAt the end more than three quarters of the audience voted for a pro-smart-growth resolution. This may reflect some selection bias – people concerned about sprawl may have been more likely to attend – but I believe that given accurate information most citizens will support smart growth due to its various savings and benefits.  

Smart growth sometimes faces organized opposition by critics. It is important that planners respond effectively and professionally. Here is my critique of O'Toole’s claims and some advice for planners who face similar critics. 

Todd Litman
June 20, 2011, 9am PDT
Smart Growth opponent Wendell Cox clamors that land use regulations imposed by Smart Growth exacerbate the ongoing housing woes.
The Wall Street Journal
October 6, 2010, 2pm PDT
Wendell Cox questions the economic impact of the city's much-celebrated land use and transportation policies, which are intended to strengthen the urban core and discourage sprawl.
New Geography
June 5, 2009, 6am PDT
The executive director of the Philadelphia City Planning Commission says that the zoning "overlay" of the central Delaware waterfront will be replaced by a new master plan in 12 to 16 months.
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Blog post
March 20, 2009, 10am PDT

The planning profession’s ambivalence toward Houston has always been a little frustrating. In part, the profession’s attitude is understandable. Houston hasn’t embraced planning’s conventions, so why should the profession embrace Houston?

Fair enough. But the downside is losing the opportunity to look at core issues and problems from a completely different lens. This is especially true when it comes to housing development where Houston performs remarkably better than its peers.

Samuel Staley
Blog post
September 6, 2007, 9am PDT

This week Salon.com published a remarkable interview with a contender for the White House. The candidate didn't offer the solution to stabilizing Iraq, strengthening the economy, or bringing down the price of a six-pack (at least not directly), but for the first time in the history of American campaigning that I'm aware of, he referred to the issue of "land use."

Josh Stephens