Planning and Zoning are the instruments by which a community – usually, a county or municipality – regulates the use of land and property, ostensibly in the interest of the community’s growth and devlopment. Some examples of planning and zoning include:
-The creation of distinctly commercial, residential, or “mixed-use” areas to promote certain types of development;
-Parking requirements or restrictions in neighborhoods or districts;
-Limitation of development, whether commercial or residential, in environmental refuge areas;
-Standards for the size, shape, or color of buildings.
Planning and zoning laws are commonly understood as local codes or ordinances, but can also trigger laws and regulations on the state and federal level, such as those involving environmental, civil rights, or safety standards.
Cotten Schmidt & Abbott, L.L.P. has the knowledge and experience to navigate the complexities of land use issues. While we try to resolve any differences involving our clients on a voluntary, amicable basis, sometimes the dispute requires the additional land use advocacy and litigation skills that CSA’s attorneys can provide. Historically, we have particiapted in hearings (including televised hearings) involving planning and zoning issues. Examples include:
-We partnered with a regional specialty hospital for a televised hearing, pre-contruction, arising from opposition by other competing providers.
-We successfully represented the City of Covington, Louisiana, during a three day trial on a planning and zoning matter that involved new landfill regulations that conflicted with existing planning and zoning requirements.
-Most recently, our advocacy in the landfill matter has extended to the defense of municipalities in the zoning arena, due to civil rights litigation resulting from zoning decisions.