Real Estate - Zoning & Land Use

Ground Rules


Blank Rome’s premier zoning and land use attorneys have helped clients navigate the myriad zoning and land use regulations and understand the state and local politics involved in procuring approvals for all types of real estate projects.

Our Practice

We advise our clients as they take a project from conception through full approval, providing:

  • research of existing land use ordinances
  • preparation of applications for conditional use or zoning variances, if necessary
  • services to secure amendments of zoning or land use ordinances, and rezoning and master plan changes
  • representation before zoning and planning boards or commissions, as well as city councils

Our attorneys also represent clients in connection with eminent domain and condemnation challenges, including successfully representing property owners in securing multimillion dollar condemnation awards.

We guide clients in a wide range of projects, from a large mixed-use community, to the adaptive reuse of an urban manufacturing facility, to a small project requiring a special use permit.

Our zoning and land use lawyers work seamlessly with other members of our real estate practice to ensure an integrated approach, addressing environmental, construction, financing, acquisition, and disposition issues that can affect the evaluation and approval of zoning and land use applications.

Our Awards & Recognition

  • Ranked in Chambers USA in 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013, and recognized as a leading real estate practice offering a diversity of expertise ranging from transactional work to zoning and land use matters. Sources tell Chambers that Blank Rome:
    • “Provides the highest quality legal advice in a business-oriented and cost-effective manner. A go-to team of excellent practitioners that is well known for its real estate expertise.”
    • “They are accessible, available and effective, and they got the job done. They're experienced, smart and competent."
  • Ranked in Chambers USA 2013 as a Band One attorney for Zoning & Land Use, Peter Foster Kelsen is praised as "responsive, knowledgeable, levelheaded and insightful.”

Our Clients

  • Colleges and universities
  • A major international hotel operator and developer
  • National retail REIT

Our Successes

  • A national hotel developer in connection with its adaptive re-use development of two new hotels in Center City, Philadelphia including assisting in obtaining government incentives.
  • A world-renowned art institution in connection with the development of its new Philadelphia museum.
  • Representation of the Church of Latter-Day Saints in connection with the development of its first Philadelphia Temple on the Philadelphia Parkway.
  • An NFL football team in connection with the development and upgrading of its football stadium and practice facility location in Philadelphia.
  • College in connection with development and appraisal of its Campus Master Plan.
  • Major university in connection with its land use and development programming.
  • A national retail convenience food chain and a national retail pharmacy chain in connection with all their developments in Philadelphia.