Urban Planning & Development

News & Analysis as of

Some CEQA Reminders From The Third District: Urban Decay Requires Actual Mitigation When Identified By EIR As A Significant...

In a lengthy opinion filed February 28, 2014, and ordered partially published on April 1, 2014, the Third District Court of Appeal reversed the Yolo County Superior Court’s judgment denying a CEQA writ petition challenging...more

Governor's Office of Planning & Research Seeks Input to Improve California's Groundwater Management

BB&K to Provide Input to the State on Groundwater Management - The Office of Planning & Research (OPR) is seeking stakeholder input on actions to improve groundwater management in California, consistent with the...more

Jersey City Planning Board Approves Amended Redevelopment Plan for Firm Client

NJ.com reports that the Jersey City Planning Board has voted unanimously to recommend to the Municipal Council amendments to the McGinley Square East Redevelopment Plan in order to allow Sora Development in partnership with...more

CEQA Alert: Court of Appeal Addresses Inadequate Blight/Urban Decay Mitigation and Energy Impact Analyses

In California Clean Energy Committee v. City of Woodland (opinion filed 2/28/14; partial publication ordered 4/1/14), the Third Appellate District ruled that the City of Woodland violated the California Environmental Quality...more

Foothill Communities Coalition v. County of Orange: New California Court of Appeal Upholds Use of "Spot Zoning" Where a...

Spot zoning - the practice of singling out a parcel of property for either more or less restrictive zoning regulations - does not always constitute an impermissible abuse of discretion according to a new opinion from the...more

Tower Lane Properties v. City of Los Angeles: JMBM Prevails in Published Court of Appeal Opinion Holding that a City's Erroneous...

JMBM has prevailed in the Court of Appeal on behalf of its client in a well-publicized and hotly-contested development project in the City of Los Angeles. The court's published opinion will come as welcome relief to property...more

History Repeats Itself At The Mouth Of The Miami River

Ten years ago, attorney Michael Kreitzer represented a developer who was faced with an injunction on its development of a high-rise apartment building on the south side of the Miami River after it was discovered that the...more

Construction Begins On A Mixed-Use Development In Wynwood

The Wynwood district north of downtown is becoming a hot spot for mixed-use development activities. Recent articles in the South Florida Business Journal and Curbed report that construction is under way on Wynwood House, a...more

City of Bakersfield Secures Early Release of $180 million in Federal Funding for Centennial Corridor and 24th Street Widening...

The City of Bakersfield can now purchase property in the path of the Centennial Corridor Project between the Westside Parkway and Highway 58. Under the early acquisition federal program, the City of Bakersfield may purchase...more

Los Angeles Issues New Guidelines for Designing Small Lot Subdivisions

The Los Angeles Department of City Planning Advisory Agency recently released its Small Lot Subdivision Policy and Small Lot Design Guidelines. The purpose of the guidelines is to help architects, developers, and residents...more

CEQA Action Seeking to Avoid LAFCO Annexation and SOI Change Approvals is Dismissed for Failure to Comply with Procedural...

The lessons taught by the Fifth District Court of Appeal in its recently-published decision in Protect Agricultural Land v. Stanislaus County Local Agency Formation Commission (City of Ceres, RPI), ___ Cal.App.4th ___, 2014...more

STOP PRESS: Permitted Development Rights - Change of Use from Office to Residential

Hot on the heels of the recent dismissal of the High Court challenge by the London Borough of Islington and others into the exempted areas, Nick Boles, (the Planning Minister) has issued a Ministerial Statement in respect of...more

Sacramento Kings Acquire Shopping Plaza in Preparation for Stadium Development

In connection with the development of a new downtown arena, the Sacramento Kings announced recently that the team had agreed to purchase the Sacramento Downtown Plaza mall, a 14 acre development occupying 6 city blocks near...more

Permitted Development Rights - Change of Use

These permitted development rights were announced by Eric Pickles in January 2013 as one of the measures promoted by the government last year to increase the national housing supply. They came into effect in May 2013 and...more

“Spot Zoning” Found Permissible Where Small Parcel Given Greater Rights than Surrounding Properties and New Zoning Served the...

The Orange County Board of Supervisors (“Board”) approved a proposed senior citizen living community (“Project”) on a seven-acre parcel, creating a new zoning definition for senior residential housing and rezoning the parcel...more

Real Estate Tip – Part 2: Planning Board Demands: When Are They Unconstitutional?

Koontz v. St. John’s River Water Management District 133 S.Ct. 2586 (2013) - In our last real estate tip, we saw how the U.S. Supreme Court under the Nollan and Dolan cases test conditions of approval under the 5th...more

ULI Report “After Redevelopment” Proposes Tools to Promote Local Economic Development

California economic development authority and BB&K attorney Joseph E. Coomes has co-authored a new report, “After Redevelopment: New Tools and Strategies to Promote Economic Development and Build Sustainable Communities.” The...more

Second Circuit Confirms Town Of Greenburgh Unlawfully Denied Crown Castle DAS Network

On Friday, Jan. 17, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed that the Town of Greenburgh, New York, had unlawfully denied Crown Castle’s application to install a 20 node distributed antenna system (DAS)...more

Spot Zoning Not Always an Abuse of Discretion: Senior Citizen Community Project Upheld by Fourth Appellate District

The Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District recently ordered publication of the decision in Foothill Communities Coalition v. County of Orange to clarify the law regarding spot zoning in two respects. First, spot...more

The District of Columbia's Implementation of Stormwater Management Regulations Enters Second Transition Phase

During the second transition period for the implementation of the District's new Stormwater Management Regulations, certain regulated projects may qualify for exemptions from certain stormwater retention requirements....more

Philadelphia Creates Land Bank for City to Sell and Purchase Vacant Property

On January 13, 2014, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter signed into law Bill No. 130156-A, creating a municipal land bank for the city. With this law, Philadelphia became the largest U.S. city to adopt a land bank and joins...more

Virginia Supreme Court Opinions Affecting Local Government Law January 10, 2014

The Virginia Supreme Court issued new opinions this morning, some of which affect local government law. Here they are (summaries taken from the Virginia Supreme Court website, click on the Record Number to read opinion)...more

Here’s an Energy Idea More Municipal Leaders Need to Consider

Municipal leaders, both first-termers and seasoned incumbents, are reviewing energy usage by and within their municipalities. The buck often starts and stops with using CFL light bulbs, installing LED traffic lights, and...more

CEQA Year In Review 2013 - A Summary Of Published Appellate Opinions Under CEQA

INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEW - The published court decisions in 2012 reflected a heightened recognition that CEQA does not require perfection, but rather a reasonable effort to provide environmental information that...more

New York’s New Housing Marketplace Plan

Launched in 2003, by the Bloomberg administration, the New Housing Marketplace Plan set a goal for the creation and preservation of 165,000 units of affordable housing by 2014. According to a new report, through 2013, the...more

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