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• Not well understood
• Complex causes
o Prejudice and discrimination in the housing and mortgage market
o Socioeconomic status – equal rates among racial/ethnic groups
o Self-selection, group avoidance
• Schelling effect demo
o What’s wrong with self-selection?
o Racial tipping process
• Modest preferences can make a big difference
Week 15: Local Planning (Housing and Land Use Planning)
➢ Links for Reading
• Land Use and Planning
➢ Planning Process
• Local Government: empower planning commissions to develop and plan for orderly growth.
• Councils: implement zoning codes and comprehensive plans.
• Zoning Board of Appeals: make decisions regarding adjustments to the zoning code.
o Land use regulations are generally made at the local level.
o Vary widely due to local customs, physical conditions.
o Yet, the process of community development and the tools used are similar across communities.
➢ Planning Commissions
• Made up of local residents
• Make recommendations to the local governing body (such as a city council or county board)
• Have varying degrees of power
(Ex. Athens-Clarke Planning Commission & Atlanta – Neighborhood Planning Units)
➢ Comprehensive Plan
• A statement of community development policies and how policies will be implemented
• Typically set goals for the community’s growth and development 5-20 years in the future
• Demographic and economic factors
• Land use and zoning
• Housing and neighborhood quality
• Government services
➢ Planning Tools
• Zoning ordinances:
o Tools that govern how land can be used in a community
o Regulate land use, population density, site requirements and structural dimensions
o Designed to guide future development of the community
o Zoning classifications describe the permitted uses of a site within a zoning district
o The use of buildings, structures, and land
o The size, location, height, bulk, and orientation of buildings, structures, and signage
o The density of development, use, and occupancy of buildings, structures, and land
(Use of buildings, lands, density, height and set-backs, curb cuts)
o Amount of off-street parking
o Tree preservation
o Curb cuts / buffers
• Zoning Regulations:
o Preserve the character of a neighborhood
o Protect property values FHCE 3300 2
• Appeal process:
o Variances: granted when practical difficulties or unnecessary hardships prevent carrying out the strict
letter of the ordinance.
o Use variance: allows property owner to use the property in ways other than normally allowed by zoning
o Area variance: related to the use, construction or al