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Land development is a process of land use change most often initiated by the private sector, managed by the public sector, and subject to intense social conflict as existing and future interests collide. This is almost always true, regardless of the place of land development—whether in an urban neighborhood or at the city's edge. Urban land development can alter the character of neighborhoods through gentrification or revitalization; urban fringe development can lead to air and water pollution and declines in adjoining urban area viability while also providing for safe, affordable housing.

The land development process in the United States occurs in a highly decentralized system of governance and public finance. Authority for land development is a state government responsibility, but most states pass this authority ...

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