Top 15 Arguments Against New Land Use Permit – Not Just NIMBY Objections

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By P. Michael Saint, Chairman and CEO, The Saint Consulting Group

Not everyone who lives near a proposed new land use project and objects to it is a NIMBY. And not every argument raised in opposition to a new land use permit is a selfish grasp at straws. Many who say “no” to new development have sincere and legitimate concerns.

The trick in the debate is to figure out who is sincere in their arguments and who is simply against change and grabbing for any excuse they can in order to advance a selfish NIMBY agenda in position to development.

Below are 15 legitimate arguments we often see voiced in battles over land use permits

Top 15 Real and Persuasive Arguments Against Issuing a New Land Use Permit.

1)     It will produce far too many vehicle trips a day for the local streets to handle without becoming gridlocked.

2)   It will place too much stress on existing water supplies and sewers.

3)   It will add hundreds of new children to the school system that is already overcrowded.

4)    It will endanger existing rare or protected plant or animal species.

5)   It will cause storm runoff that will flood adjoining properties.

6)   It will encroach on burial grounds of indigenous peoples.

7)   It will pollute local air or drinking water supplies.

8)   It will destroy an historic landmark.

9)   It will encourage sprawl.

10)  It will change the character of the local community from rural to suburban or from suburban to urban.

11)   It will encroach on the peace and safety of adjacent hospitals, schools or churches.

12)   It will attract strangers to the neighborhood, raising the potential for new crime.

13)   It will destroy existing jobs in existing businesses.

14)   It will remove valuable agricultural or industrial property from being used.

15)   It will eliminate important open space.

P. Michael Saint is chairman and CEO of The Saint Consulting Group, email

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