Green zoning

From HousingWiki

The incorporation of 'green' building standards into local land use law, or urban densification argued as environmentally beneficial. 



Urban density as green zoning: 'Ace' Houston et al

Seattle resident and architect Andrew Grant 'Ace' Houston wrote in "A New Emerald City: Banning Exclusionary Zoning, Introducing 'Green Zoning'." 9 August 2019, presenting "Green zoning" as the enivonmentally and social beneficial antithesis to exclusionary zoning

Houston defines exclusionary zoning as:

single-family zoning, single-unit detached zoning, any rules that limit the number of residences on a piece of land (which is not the same as limits on impervious cover), any rules that limit the number of unrelated people who can live together on a piece of property, et al.

He then presents seven benefits to "Green zoning," achieved by repealing all forms of exclusionary zoning as defined: 

  1. New Homes will be available with Green Zoning
  2. New Homeowners will be created with Green Zoning
  3. New Customers will be closer with Green Zoning
  4. New Commerce will find room in Green Zoning
  5. New Cultural Centers will be created in Green Zoning
  6. New Transit Riders will emerge with Green Zoning
  7. New Green Space will be prioritized with Green Zoning


[Wolf 2011]:

The focus of this essay is a growing practice to which we can attach the label “Green Zoning” — the incorporation of LEED and competing privately generated standards into local government law, as part of the existing zoning or land use ordinance, or as a free-standing green building ordinance. After reviewing some of the pertinent literature on this topic, this essay will highlight and provide illustrations of six problems with Green Zoning practices:

1. The Delegation Problem — Can and should local laws be based on a moving target (standards set by private parties that continue to change and evolve)?
2. The Compatibility Problem — Are some green building standards inconsistent with good planning practices?
3. The Expertise Problem — Are already overburdened local officials up to the task of incorporating, administering, and overseeing Green Zoning?
4. The Eco-Political Problem — How or should local officials factor in the battles waged over green building standards?
5. The Laboratory Problem — Are variations from locality to locality a good idea, or do state standards make more sense in this area?
6. The Philosophical Problem — What role should builders, architects, and industry experts play in shaping zoning and planning ordinances?