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Land Use, Zoning and Planning Law in Arizona

The laws controlling how land can and cannot be used in Peoria, Arizona are fairly intricate, and can be confusing to laypersons. This should provide a basic overview.

"Zoning" is the process by which a local government makes laws determining how individual pieces of land within its jurisdiction can be used. Normally, towns or cities are segmented off into "zones," each one being designated for a specific type of use. Examples of typical zoning categories are single family residence, commercial, multi-unit housing, or industrial.

There are a lot of rationales and purposes for zoning laws. In general, they're based in common sense: chemical plants shouldn't be created next to daycare centers, pig farms should not be created in the middle of a residential neighborhood, and other simple principles similar to that. Zoning laws, by keeping conflicting land uses separate, make life easier for all parties, ensuring that property values will be preserved, and that necessary industries can be conducted where they will not bother anyone.

Zoning also serves the interests of industry, as well as residents. By ensuring that there are places where heavy industry can take place, well-planned zoning regulations will ensure that industrialists are free to practice their trade, and that residents will not be disturbed by those activities, which makes industry more feasible by helping it prevent costly nuisance lawsuits.

What if My Property Violates Peoria, Arizona's Zoning Laws?

If something on your property is in violation of a Peoria, Arizona zoning law, the landowner has many avenues.

The most discernible solution is to correct the problem, so your property is no longer in violation of local zoning laws. If the violation is minor, and correcting it would not be extremely costly, this is likely the ideal way to go.

What if, however, you've invested a considerable amount of time and money into making an improvement on your property, only to find that it breaks your local zoning laws in some minor way? In this case, you can apply for a variance. This is basically an exception to the zoning rules. If declining to enforce these rules would not harm anyone, and would not do much to advance the purpose of Peoria, Arizona's zoning laws, a variance will normally be granted.

Furthermore, if you have been residing on your property for a long time, and made improvements on it that complied with the zoning laws in effect at the time, a new zoning law that would be violated by your prevailing use of your property, the new law cannot be enforced against you. The U.S. Constitution bars the passage of "ex post facto," or retroactive, laws. Once the laws take effect, however, you'll have to comply with the new zoning laws with respect to any new improvements you want to make on your property.

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How Can a Peoria, Arizona Attorney Help?

If you are in the process of physically altering your property, you are almost sure to face some contentions having to do with local zoning laws. If you find that zoning laws are making it very hard to use your property as you see fit, you may have legal recourse, normally in the form of a variance. Of course, your chances of success in any zoning dispute will be immeasurably increased if you have the assistance of a qualified Peoria, Arizona attorney.

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Life in Peoria

Peoria, Arizona is situated in both Maricopa and Yavapai counties.  It is a major suburb of Phoenix and is home to a population of about 160,000 people.  Peoria has grown economically and industrially in recent decades. 

The city of Peoria, Arizona is known for developing and incorporating innovative technologies related to water irrigation and solar power harnessing.  For example, the Maricopa Solar Power Plant is located in Peoria and was completed in 2010. 

One of the main attractions in Peoria is the Peoria Sports Complex.  The stadium brings in many tourists, festivals, tours, concerts, and social events.  Several Major League Baseball teams use the stadium for spring training and year-round training.  The Peoria Sports Complex has contributed to much of the city's growth and economic development. 

Peoria's population continues to grow as more and more people relocate there for both work and leisure.  In fact, the name "Peoria" has almost become synonymous with leisure living and resort vacations in the state of Arizona. 

Lawyers in Peoria, Arizona engage in a number of legal services which assist the city's bustling social and economic scene.  Peoria attorneys enhance their skills through memberships in groups such as the West Maricopa County Bar Association. 

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