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Land Use and Society

Land Use and Society: Geography, Law, and Public Policy (Revised Edition)
Rutherford H. Platt
Island Press, 2004

About the Book
Table of Contents
Diagrams and Images

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About the Book

Land Use and Society is a unique and compelling exploration of interactions among law, geography, history, and culture and their joint influence on the evolution of land use and urban form in the United States. Originally published in 1996, this completely revised, expanded, and updated edition retains the strengths of the earlier version while introducing a host of new topics and insights on the twenty-first century metropolis.

This new edition devotes greater attention to urban land use and related social issues with two new chapters tracing American city and metropolitan change over the twentieth century. More emphasis is given to social justice and the environmental movement and their respective roles in shaping land use and policy in recent decades. This edition of Land Use and Society is upated to reflect the 2000 Census, the most recent Supreme Court decisions, and various topics of current interest such as affordable housing, protecting urban water supplies, urban biodiversity, and "ecological cities." It also includes an updated conclusion that summarizes some positive and negative outcomes of urban land policies to date.

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Preface: Reflections on a Cross-Country Flight

Part I: Preliminaries: Land Uses and Concepts
Chapter 1 - The Meanings and Uses of Land
Chapter 2 - Shaping the Landscape: The Interaction of Geography and Law

Part II: From Feudalism to Federalism: The Social Organization of Land Use

Chapter 3 - Medieval Roots of Modern Land Use Institutions
Chapter 4 - City Growth and Reform in the 19th Century
Chapter 5 - Building a Metropolitan Nation: 1900-1945
Chapter 6 - The Polarized Metropolis: 1945-2000

Part III: Discordant Voices: Property Ownership, Local Government, the Courts

Chapter 7 - Property Rights: The Owner as Planner
Chapter 8 - The Tapestry of Local Governments
Chapter 9 - Local Zoning and Growth Management
Chapter 10 - Land Use and the Courts

Part IV: Beyond Localism: The Search for Broader Land Use Policies

Chapter 11 - Land Programs: Regional, State, Federal
Chapter 12 - Congress and Urban Land Use

Conclusion: Status and Prospect

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Last Updated: May 22, 2006