Houston land use policy

These regulations were significantly reduced for urban neighborhoods following reform indropping the minimum lot size down to 1, square feet and making townhouses feasible. These regulations do not exist in Houston. Something, something, health, safety, and morals?

A restrictive covenant is an agreement among property owners regulating how they can and cannot use their property. In a typical residential neighborhood, this might mean keeping out unwanted businesses or cleaning up litter.

Cities do this kind of thing naturally—no need for single-use zoning. Accessory dwelling units are completely legal and common across the city. As long a you have the required parking, go crazy.

Land Use & Land Cover Data

We come up with elaborate theories of how cities can become the next Silicon Valley. Private restrictive covenants can certainly be bad. Houston does mandate that lots subdivided for single-family homes be at least 5, square feet. A high-density area far outside of downtown—Uptown. Unlike every other major U.

Most covenants today are designed to make sure that communities stay the way residents would like them to stay. Those tiny homes that D. The scourge of D. Besides undermining walkability, this also saddles the city with unnecessary infrastructure maintenance costs.

Unlike Dallas and other Sun Belt cities, however, Houston does not mandate higher minimum lot sizes e. In Houston, the city comes in and foots the bill for the litigation upon receiving a complaint. Houston does enforce private restrictive covenants.

This was a nice neighborhood before all the apartments and retail came in. This means that restaurants, homes, warehouses, and offices are free to mix as the market allows. Sincethe city of Houston has played a role in enforcing these private restrictive covenants. In many cases, private covenants also help provide club goods like parks, security guards, and roads.

Residents then sign a contract agreeing to abide by these private regulations and contribute to a fund for their enforcement. In many cases— including multifamily housing, commercial and industrial developments, and single-family homes under special circumstances—this required setback falls substantially and in many cases may be zero.

For single-family homes, the maximum required setback is 25 feet. What About Private Restrictive Covenants?Houston was recently victim to the largest rainfall in U.S. history, a 52” deluge from Hurricane Harvey that’s left many parts of the metro still underwater.

Houston is also arguably the nation’s least-regulated metro area for land use, featuring a central city that doesn’t even have a zoning code. In Texas, the law allowed for regulations of building sizes and heights, the percentage of a lot that could be occupied, and the density of communities, as well as.

Houston Land Use Policy Houston is a large city with very unique qualities that most cities cannot even begin to understand, but is this just Houstonian pride talking? No, actually one of the unique qualities that Houston has is how we handle our land use planning.

Houston is a large city with very unique qualities that most cities cannot even begin to understand, but is this just Houstonian pride talking? No, actually one of the unique qualities that Houston has is how we handle our land use planning.

How Houston Regulates Land Use

Since there seems to be a lot of confusion about land-use regulation and planning in Houston, here’s a quick explainer on what Houston does regulate, doesn’t regulate, and how private covenants shape the city.

1. What Houston Doesn’t Do. Houston doesn’t mandate single-use zoning. Urban Houston Framework - Welcome to the City of Houston.

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Houston land use policy
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