Aesthetics, Community Character, and the Law (PAS 489/490)

By Christopher Duerksen, Matthew Goebel, AICP

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Today's planners use myriad tools and techniques to identify and protect what is special about their communities: historic preservation ordinances, improved sign controls, computerized viewshed protection regulations, tree-planting and landscaping requirements, cell tower controls, and more. As the level of preservation activity has increased dramatically, so has the number of court cases c...

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Page Count
Date Published
March 1, 1999
APA Planning Advisory Service

About the Authors

Christopher Duerksen

Matthew Goebel
Matt Goebel is a planner and attorney in the Denver office of Clarion Associates and a Director of the firm. He works principally in the areas of planning, zoning, and historic preservation. His numerous projects have included development codes for dozens of large and small jurisdictions around the country. Mr. Goebel is co-author of Rules that Shape Urban Form and Aesthetics, Community Character, and the Law, published by the American Planning Association.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
Historical perspective/background

2. Design review
Design review in historic areas • Design review outside historic areas • Implementing and administering design review

3. View protection
Legal aspects • Types of view protection • Recent developments

4. Tree and vegetation protection
Key legal issues • Drafting considerations

5. Billboards, signs, and newsboxes
Legal issues • Guidelines for drafting local sign and billboard controls • Recent developments • Newsboxes

6. Telecommunications facilities
General legal issues • Personal wireless service facilities • Satellite dishes and television antennas • Amateur radio antennas • Other general legal requirements for telecommunications facilities • Local regulatory issues • Conclusion

7. Emerging issues
The aesthetics of public infrastructure • Wind turbines • Regional partnerships and heritage areas

List of references