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New Developments in Environmental Law

Zoning (6)

Bourne’s Ban on Recreational Marijuana Establishments is Not a Zoning Bylaw and So is Valid

Written by / Published Friday, 10 February 2023 12:43
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, in its decision in the case of Haven Center, Inc. v. Town of Bourne, 490 Mass. 364 (2022), upheld as valid the Town of Bourne’s general bylaw ban on recreational marijuana establishments.

SJC Gives Shot in The Arm for Commercial Solar Developments Under Local Zoning

Written by / Published Sunday, 24 July 2022 08:16
Tracer Lane II Realty, LLC v. City of Waltham, decided by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court on June 2, 2022, was eagerly awaited by municipalities and solar project sponsors alike. The citation is Tracer Lane II Realty, LLC v. City of Waltham, No. SJC-13195 (Mass. Jun. 2, 2022). Real estate, environmental and energy attorneys and their clients take note.

Housing Choice Act of 2020 Promotes Multi-Family in Massachusetts Zoning Act and 40R

Written by / Published Wednesday, 29 December 2021 14:23
Governor Baker signed the Housing Choice Act of 2020, Chapter 358 of the Acts of 2020 (the “Housing Choice Act”) on January 14, 2021, as an emergency law, which made it effective immediately. It made significant procedural and substantive changes to the Massachusetts Zoning Act (Chapter 40A) and Smart Growth Districts (Chapter 40R), largely to facilitate multi-family housing near transportation facilities.

Appeals Court Takes The Mystery Ouf Of Altering One - and Two-Family Preexisting Nonconforming Residences: No More "Grandfathering"

Written by / Published Wednesday, 12 August 2020 12:21
The decision of the Appeals Court in Henry W. Comstock, Jr., Trustee and another v. Zoning Board of Appeals of Gloucester and others, authored by Justice James Milkey, illustrates the strong protections afforded by G.L. c. 40 A, section 6 to owners of single- or two-family preexisting nonconforming residences who want to renovate their residences. They are protected by significant obstacles to neighbor opponents of such projects on account of minor issues.

Appeals Court Holds a Land Court Settlement Agreement Doesn’t Bind a Non-Party, Distinguishing Morganelli

Written by / Published Friday, 26 June 2020 12:13
In a clear, well-reasoned opinion deciding the case of Stevens, Trustee v. Zoning Board of Appeals of Bourne, No. 19-P-248 (June 19, 2020), the Appeals Court (Green, C.J.) held that a settlement agreement between the Town’s selectmen and a property owner resolving a Land Court action did not bind an abutter who was not party to the litigation.

Tiny Houses Face Zoning and Other Obstacles in Massachusetts

Written by / Published Friday, 09 February 2018 16:23
Tiny House fever is sweeping the nation. The public seems to be head over (w)heels for the concept—small yet artistically crafted homes offering the key elements of a house in the space of a traditional garden shed.

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