Zoning

Smaller Lots, Smaller Prices: Evidence from Houston

In recent years, pro-housing reformers around the country have successfully changed state and local land use policies to allow greater density on residential lots zoned exclusively for one house. Most of these efforts have focused on adjusting regulations such as…

FAR Away from Home

In addition to the use of zoning regulations to control the location, density, and types of housing, many jurisdictions use similar regulatory tools to limit the total floor space a building can have. These limits, which typically take the form…

Exclusionary By Design: The History of Zoning in Boston Suburbs

While popular scholarship has extensively documented the racially exclusionary effects of low density and single family zoning, particularly in its earliest forms, there is less agreement on whether it was adopted for the explicit purpose of segregating by race and…

Lot Sizes: When the Bare Minimum is Way Too Much

Minimum lot size requirements are a common tool used by cities across the United States to ensure that homes are not built on parcels that are deemed aesthetically “too small” for housing. Available evidence suggests that these requirements also drive…

Housing Underproduction in California – Up For Growth

Published: 2019 | Up for Growth Abstract However, this recent imbalance continues a much longer trend in California, where restrictive local development and land-use policies have curtailed housing production for decades. These policies, enacted by local jurisdictions to maintain walkable,…

Sustainable Communities or the Next Urban Renewal?

Published: 2020 | Moira O’Neill, Giulia Gualco-Nelson, Eric Biber | Ecology Law Quarterly Abstract California has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) to address climate change. But in California, the sector that produces the largest share of greenhouse gas…

It’s Time to End Single-Family Zoning

Published: 2020 | Paavo Monkkonen, Michael Lens, and Michael Manville | Journal of the American Planning Association Abstract Local planning in the United States is unique in the amount of land it reserves for detached single-family homes. This privileging of…