Land Use & Zoning

In the process of obtaining building permits, business owners and real estate developers may encounter situations where they need to address special use variances with the Board of Zoning Appeals. Understanding when these variances are required is crucial to navigating the complex world of zoning and land use regulations. Because the procedures that must be followed when handling these types of appeals can be complicated, it is crucial for property owners and developers to work with an attorney who
Continue Reading When Will Use Variances Be Required for Building Permits?

There’s a metal stick in the hedgerow between my house and my neighbor’s that tells us how much yard we need to mow and how much of the sidewalk is our responsibility to clear each time it snows. For such an insignificant piece of metal, it holds a lot of power (see Figure 1).

Each time I see it, I’m transported back to U.W. Law Professor Gretchen Viney’s real estate class. It was there, while practicing reading legal
Continue Reading Beyond Geocaching, There’s Benchmarking: Finding Markers of Property Law in the Wild

Cox v. City of Madison Zoning Board of Appeals, Appeal No. 2020AP478 (July 8, 2021)

Kathleen Cox purchased property on Lake Mendota with the plan to demolish and rebuild the existing house and wet boathouse. A wet boathouse is one that is built over excavated shoreline with the lake water underneath, into which a boat can directly navigate. Cox learned after rebuilding the wet boathouse and completing design plans for the home that a Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
Continue Reading Denial of Variance Request Regarding Lakefront Yard Setback Requirements