Aligning Development Codes with the Law

Zoning Practice — November 2014

By Mark White, AICP


ZP subscriber
List Price
Sign In & Download

Not a member but want to buy a copy? You'll need to create a free My APA account to purchase. Create account

If your community's land development regulations are old, encourage the wrong kind of development, or are riddled with legal land mines, you might consider updating them. Communities update their regulations for these and many other reasons.

And the practice of code drafting has changed dramatically over the past several decades. Advances in technology, a renewed emphasis on physical design and sustainability, and community empowerment have changed how communities approach a code update.

This issue of Zoning Practice provides planners and zoning professionals with guidance about the legal issues to consider when drafting a development code. It includes tips about how to put the code together in a way that considers issues of statutory authority and constitutionality and describes how to write in a way that avoids "legalese."


Page Count
Date Published
Nov. 1, 2014
Adobe PDF
American Planning Association

About the Author

Mark White, AICP
Mark White is an attorney and urban planner whose practice emphasizes zoning and code drafting. He has completed over 150 development code updates, zoning regulations, and comprehensive plan/smart growth implementation projects for local governments in over 36 states. He has extensive experience in dealing with sign regulations and is a frequent presenter on the subject. He is a member of the North Carolina and Missouri Bars, AICP, and the American Planning Association. Mr. White has a JD and Master of Regional Planning from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.