A city wants to permanently protect most of a large tract of land as permanent open space while serving other city goals with smaller portions of the land. Various approaches have been suggested, from regulatory changes, city financial investments, and city partnerships with developers, affordable housing developers, land trusts, and neighborhood groups. What's the best option?
One possibility is conservation limited development, or simply limited development. This development model preserves a large portion of a tract of land for conservation while allowing limited development on some portion of that land. The land with the most important conservation values is preserved, and development typically covers a smaller area than allowed by regulations.
The March-April 2019 issue of PAS Memo introduces the conservation limited development concept and examines the roles local governments can play in encouraging or leading these projects to meet community goals.
About the Author
Wayne Feiden, FAICP
Wayne Feiden, FAICP, is Director of Planning & Sustainability for the City of Northampton and Lecturer of Practice in planning at UMass. His focus includes sustainability, resiliency, revitalization, open space, alternative transportation, and public health. Wayne has a long term interest in assessing sustainability. He wrote the APA Report on Assessing Sustainability, focused on that same subject during a Fulbright Specialist fellowship at the University of Auckland, oversaw Northampton’s STAR Communities application, earning the city the nation’s first Five Star rating, and served on the STAR Communities Steering Committee.