Laws of the Land: Land Use and Environmental Law

This course examines how the ownership, development, and use of land is controlled. It begins with a brief introduction to the U.S. legal system.  It examines when and why government regulation, rather than private market ordering, may be necessary to control land use patterns. It examines the rights of owners of land and the legal process of land transfer as well as development rights and the regulation of land use in the United States. Issues discussed include takings, regulatory takings, and constitutional challenges to zoning ordinances.  Finally, the course introduces students to basic principles of civil rights law in the context of housing and land use as well as fundamentals of environmental law.