Land use and zoning

Land use and zoning

Real estate development is complex.  Each project requires analysis of, and compliance with, myriad overlapping local, state and federal laws and regulations. At Manley Burke, we have broad experience in all matters related to land use, zoning, regulation and development. We assist clients in matters such as:

  • Administrative appeals
  • Administrative land use hearings
  • Commercial and industrial development
  • Court appeals from government action
  • Eminent domain
  • Entitlements
  • Entitlement preservation and extensions
  • Historic preservation
  • Private land use covenants
  • Public and private partnerships and development agreements
  • Public utility easements
  • Permitting and bonding
  • Reciprocal easement agreements
  • Residential development
  • Special exceptions
  • Urban and rural development
  • Variances
  • Zoning appeals
  • Zoning determinations
  • Zoning violations


We regularly represent a range of clients in these matters including:

  • Developers
  • Landowners
  • Local governments
  • Neighborhood and public interest groups

Time is money, delays are expensive.  Litigation can drag on for years, draining resources along the way. Our approach to these matters is to analyze the issues to quickly determine the best path forward.  Once the client is comfortable with a strategy, we use our extensive negotiation and litigation skills to your advantage. Whatever your land use or zoning issue, we work to resolve it quickly and successfully.

Eminent domain

The attorneys at Manley Burke have decades of experience representing owners going through the painful process of having their property taken by the government.  These fights range from whether a take has occurred, to how damaging the take is, to whether the government even has the right to use eminent domain in the first place.  Sometimes, the fight is about value. Whatever the issue, the attorneys of Manley Burke have seen it before, and dealt with it successfully in the past. With deep experience in this area, Manley Burke will marshal your evidence, engage leading expert witnesses, and deliver the best possible result to the client.

Historic preservation

Preserving historic buildings and properties is an issue close to our hearts at Manley Burke. Our offices are located in one of Cincinnati’s historic downtown properties. Located in a historic district, our building at 225 West Court Street was originally constructed in 1882. After purchasing it, we completed extensive rehabilitation under National Historic Act requirements.

In our legal practice, we represent property owners and community groups in historic preservation matters. We have fought aggressively in court to protect historic properties from destruction or negative impact due to eminent domain actions or violations of local historic preservation rules. On the other hand, we have also successfully represented owners and developers seeking to set aside historic designations that render a property unusable.  In short – history should be preserved, but owners are also entitled to use property that has outlived its usefulness.