Land Use

Land Use (General)

The firm’s attorneys have experience, skill, and expertise in a broad range of zoning and land use matters.  We have represented developers and land owners in acquiring land use approvals for mixed use developments, golf course developments, shopping centers, marinas, office buildings, hotels, resorts, residential subdivisions, and industrial and business parks. 

 

Our practice includes prosecuting petitions for Planned Unit Developments, rezones, comprehensive plan amendments, annexations, variances, site plans, subdivision plats, and conditional uses; partnering with local governments on municipal parking garages, affordable housing initiatives, and other public projects; defending against takings by governmental agencies and certiorari challenges by third parties in circuit court and on appeal; and prosecuting Bert Harris and other compensatory claims, vested rights actions, and appeals.

 

Land Use (Developments of Regional Impact)

The firm has an established practice of sheparding landowners and developers through the land use entitlement process for major developments, which typically entail Development of Regional Impact (DRI) review.  Members of the firm have been land use counsel for approximately 25 DRIs, from Pelican Bay, one of the first in Southwest Florida, to the new Town of Ave Maria, which includes Ave Maria University. 

 

Such representation routinely includes necessary Growth Management Plan Amendments, coordination with and representation before Regional Planning Councils, the Department of Community Affairs, and local governments and their staffs.

 

Land Use (Rural Land Stewardship)

Members of the firm were instrumental in the first implementation of a Rural Land Stewardship Area (RLSA) Program in Florida.  Such programs are authorized by F.S.163.3177(11)(d), Florida Statutes

 

The Collier County Rural Land Stewardship Overlay District encompasses approximately 200,000 acres and provides an innovative incentive based program designed to protect important ecological resources, protect prime agricultural areas, and promote sustainable compact development forms. 

 

The firm also represented the landowner and development entity who first utilized the RLSA program, which protected approximately 17,000 acres of important wetlands and wildlife habitat and gained land use entitlements for the Town of Ave Maria and Ave Maria University, which total some 5027 acres.  The firm was counsel in the establishment of the first 6 Stewardship Sending Areas and is currently pursuing several others on behalf of landowners in the RLSA.

 

Land Use (Mixed Use Projects)

The firm regularly serves as land use counsel for sophisticated mixed use, pedestrian village oriented, urban projects.  Often, the work we do in downtown redevelopment areas like Naples’ Renaissance Village and innumerable projects on Naples’ prestigious Fifth Avenue South, or at Imperial Landing in Bonita Springs, becomes the catalyst for revitalization initiatives in Community Redevelopment Areas. 

 

Other times, the work we do in water oriented mixed use resort projects like Naples Bay Resort and the Esplanade on Marco Island becomes a dynamic community focal point.  On all of these projects, we collaborate closely with the client and its consultants to develop strategic initiatives to build public consensus in sensitive, and sometimes volatile, political environments.