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Land Use Regulation in Houston Contradicts the City’s Free Market Reputation

34 ELR 10045
Environmental Law Reporter
2004

Free market advocates point triumphantly to Houston, Texas, to contend that the city’s lack of zoning demonstrates that market mechanisms for land-use management can distribute physical space efficiently and equitably. Mr. Kapur disputes that Houston is the exemplar of a free-market system. He contends that extensive government regulation belies the city’s reputation for laissez-faire land-use management, and that scare tactics employed during the zoning referenda campaigns undermine the claim that Houston voters rejected successive zoning proposals solely due to their preference for free market principles. 

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