BLOGS: North Carolina Land Use Litigator

Wednesday, July 30, 2014, 11:26 AM

Land Use Litigator Video Series: The Relationship Between "Zoning" and "Planning"

In the latest video installment from the North Carolina Land Use Litigator, John Cooke and Mike Thelen get into the details of the relationship between and the distinct concepts of "Zoning" and "Planning".  In this episode, Mike and John address:

-- What is "planning" and how is it different from "zoning"?
-- What is a comprehensive plan and how is it important in zoning?
-- Is the local planning director involved in both planning and zoning?
-- Why should I interact with the local planning director?

The video can be accessed here.


Mike Thelen practices in Womble, Carlyle's Real Estate Litigation and Land Use practice group. He regularly represents a wide variety of clients, from local governments to businesses, in land use and land development matters in both state and federal venues throughout North Carolina.

Follow the North Carolina Land Use Litigator on Twitter at @nclanduselaw and "like" us on Facebook here.

Monday, July 21, 2014, 5:03 PM

Raleigh's Citywide Zoning Remapping Goes Interactive

We've blogged in the past about the City of Raleigh's ongoing zoning remapping, the result of the City's 2013 overhaul of its unified development ordinance.

The City has released a new online mapping tool to assist landowners and prospective landowners in determining the proposed rezoning for a piece of property.  The tool is easy to use, and it's accessible here.

It's very, very handy.

No, this is not Raleigh's zoning map.  But you get the idea.

Mike Thelen practices in Womble, Carlyle's Real Estate Litigation and Land Use practice group. He regularly represents a wide variety of clients, from local governments to businesses, in land use and land development matters in both state and federal venues throughout North Carolina.

Follow the North Carolina Land Use Litigator on Twitter at @nclanduselaw and "like" us on Facebook here.

Monday, June 30, 2014, 4:39 PM

Land Use Litigator Publishes In Other Fora: N.C. and American Bar Association Pieces

Mike Thelen, co-editor and co-author of this blog, recently published a long form piece with the Real Property Section of the North Carolina Bar Association.  The piece is entitled "Rub a Dub Dub, the Clean Water Act Might Regulate Your Tub".  The article is viewable here, and it discusses the recently proposed rule changes affecting the Clean Water Act.

In addition, the American Bar Association's Real Property, Trusts and Estates Section syndicated a past post we did on the Supreme Court of the United States' March decision in Marvin M. Brandt Revocable Trust v. United States, No. 12-1173 (March 10, 2014).  The Section's eReport, in which our piece was reprinted, can be viewed here.  We're honored at the distinction.


I think we'll give the typewriter a break in the coming weeks.

Mike Thelen practices in Womble, Carlyle's Real Estate Litigation and Land Use practice group. He regularly represents a wide variety of clients, from local governments to businesses, in land use and land development matters in both state and federal venues throughout North Carolina.

Follow the North Carolina Land Use Litigator on Twitter at @nclanduselaw and "like" us on Facebook here.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014, 4:41 PM

Land Use Litigator Video Series: John Cooke and Mike Thelen Talk Quasi-Judicial Proceedings

In this latest short video, John Cooke and I talk about quasi-judicial land use proceedings.  These are mini-trials, remember, where legal, local government and land use acumen are highly valued.

Enjoy the video here.

"All in favor of reversing the zoning administrator, say 'aye'."

Mike Thelen practices in Womble, Carlyle's Real Estate Litigation and Land Use practice group. He regularly represents a wide variety of clients, from local governments to businesses, in land use and land development matters in both state and federal venues throughout North Carolina.

Follow the North Carolina Land Use Litigator on Twitter at @nclanduselaw and "like" us on Facebook here.

Monday, June 23, 2014, 3:03 PM

Land Use In Action: Raleigh and Other Dynamic Metros At the Forefront of the "Great Inversion"

Our regular readers will know that we will, at times, take a step back from the legal side of things to look at the practical side of things.  After all, in the words of Paul Collier, "Most conduct is guided by norms rather than by laws."  So, let's check out a fascinating norm.

A recent report from The Atlantic by the unparalleled Richard Florida, digesting a report from William Frey with The Brookings Institute, concludes that between 2010 and 2013 (notably, including post-Great Recession numbers gathered after the recognized first "retirements" in 2011 of the Baby Boom generation) 19 of the 51 largest metro areas in the United States saw greater population growth in "core" or "primary cities" than in suburb areas.  Mr. Florida calls this "good news for urbanists and city boosters".

We cite this information neither as "urbanists" nor as "city boosters", but as a group of lawyers keenly aware of and decidedly interested in geographic population (the "where" in development) and economic population (the "what" in development) shifts in the United States and in North Carolina.  What's more, the study highlights "high-tech, knowledge economy hub" Raleigh-Cary -- the Land Use Litigator's physical home -- alongside D.C., San Jose, Austin, Denver and Seattle.

This kind of development creates countless opportunities and challenges for governments and businesses alike, all of which are charged with some interest in the laws, regulations, impacts and environments that aim to shape or will result from these seismic shifts dubbed "the great inversion" by Alan Ehrenhalt.

The Atlantic article can be read here, and William Frey's report can be accessed on The Brookings Institution website here.

These cities are exciting places to be, right now, and will serve as the engines of the American economy in the coming generation.  We're pleased to be a part of this.


Mike Thelen practices in Womble, Carlyle's Real Estate Litigation and Land Use practice group. He regularly represents a wide variety of clients, from local governments to businesses, in land use and land development matters in both state and federal venues throughout North Carolina.

Follow the North Carolina Land Use Litigator on Twitter at @nclanduselaw and "like" us on Facebook here.
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