What "officialdoms" fail to realize is that developers have to think many, many, months ahead of themselves. They have to think much further out than home builders. A home builder can adjust fairly quickly when market conditions change, or new codes are introduced into any city's regimen. Land developers, on the other hand, have to think thru their entire land investment on any given project. It can take years to fully develop a large land project. Before a land developer signs a contract to purchase, hundreds of thousands of dollars could be spent of preliminary zoning, market studies, and cost analysis. This is all done without benefit of zoning approval. Denial of zoning can crater all the plans and investment. In fact, this happened twice in two subdivisions I have written about in this blog. Those two tracts are still sitting.......contributing nothing to Rowlett's well being. They, collectively, should be adding $600K a week to Rowlett's tax base at this time. They are just languishing in the heat.
Once committed to purchase developable land, it is very hard for the developer to change the marketing concept. ALL CHANGES must be acceptable to the marketplace. That's what developers do for a living. They read markets and take risk in supplying home lot product for those markets. Developers specialize in reading those markets.
"Officialdoms" don't specialize in reading markets. In fact, I doubt many can spell it. They wouldn't know an absorption rate chart if it hit them across the nose. They wouldn't know what backed up the chart, nor the validity of the back up data. That is not their job. Their job is to impose rules and regulations that may, or may not, aid in the development success of the project. If "officialdom" ever comes up with a good idea, you can bet the developers will jump on it because it contributes to the success of their business. Contrary to that, our new Form Base Codes require a certain number of 800 square foot dwellings mixed in with substantially larger units. Quite a debate is resulting from discussions about this on the new proposed Dexham Road subdivision. I feel Rowlett has made some serious mistakes in these endeavors. I feel the absence of the Trammel Crows, the Lincoln Properties, and the Roger Stauback Companies are all indicative of the mistakes. Our "big" land developers are all people I had never heard of before........and I'm in the business......all over the DFW market. I think Rowlett's reputation precedes itself.
Now, Dallas is making a sharp turn without giving the developers time to adjust. They are imposing new rules and regulations while developers are still in the process of working thru their standing land inventory. That is how stupid "officialdoms" can get. They have no concept of good business practices. They think all their ideas are good for their city. They think things they learn in seminars are what's right. They are wrong. At best, new information and ideas help, when combined with the business savvy of a developer. The developer wants success, too.
At least, Dallas is an urban market. Rowlett isn't. What works in Dallas may not be what's best for Rowlett.......although you are led to believe that one size fits all.
We aren't exactly creative around here. However, we have comfort in knowing we have Form Base Codes (including provisions for 800 sq. ft. units) and that solves all the problems. Ain't America great, or what!!