Planning for Hillside Development (PAS 466)

By Robert Olshansky, FAICP

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Should you build wide roads that promote safety or narrow ones that minimize slope disturbance? Should you preserve native plant life for aesthetic purposes or irrigate the landscape to help prevent fires?

This report will help planners advise community leaders on these and other issues involved in planning for hillside development. Drawing on documents gathered from almost 200 local governm...

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Product Details

Page Count
Date Published
Dec. 1, 1996
APA Planning Advisory Service

About the Authors

Robert Olshansky
Robert B. Olshansky, Ph.D., FAICP, is Professor and Department Head in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he has taught for 26 years. His teaching and research cover land use and environmental planning, with an emphasis on planning for natural hazards. He has published extensively on post-disaster recovery planning, planning and policy for earthquake risks, hillside planning and landslide policy, and environmental impact assessment. Professor Olshansky has studied recovery planning and management after several major disasters, including ones in California, Japan, China, Haiti, India, Taiwan, and Indonesia. His co-authored research report, Opportunity in Chaos: Rebuilding after the 1994 Northridge and 1995 Kobe Earthquakes, is available online, and his book, Clear as Mud: Planning for the Rebuilding of New Orleans, co-authored with Laurie Johnson, was published by APA Press in April 2010. His latest book, co-authored with Laurie Johnson and published by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, is After Great Disasters: How Six Countries Managed Community Recovery.

Table of Contents

A brief history of hillside development and its regulation

The role of planning

Purposes and functions of hillside regulation



A. References

B. List of jurisdictions submitting hillside documants

C. Selected excerpts from hillside plans, ordinances, and guidelines
Huntsville, Alabama, Mountainside Development District regulations • Scottsdale, Arizona, Environmentally Sensitive Lands ordinance • Berkeley, California, Fuel reduction and management plan • Los Angeles, California, Hillside regulations • Los Angeles County, California, Zoning regulations • Oakland, California, Zoning regulations • Rancho Cucamonga, California, Hillside development regulations • San Diego, California, Hillside review overlay zone and hillside design and development guidelines • San Rafael, California, Applicant's guide to procedures for geotechnical/hazarous soils review • Santa Clarita, California, Ridgeline preservation and hillside development ordinance • A hillside protection strategy for Greater Cincinnati, Ohio • Ogden, Utah, Sensitive area overlay zone regulations, Ogden City Development Code • Park City, Utah, Sensitive area overlay zone regulations