What is a builder's remedy lawsuit?

A builder’s remedy lawsuit allows a developer to file suit to have a specific piece of property chosen by the builder rezoned to allow for the opportunity to construct housing at higher densities than a municipality would otherwise allow, provided that the developer provides a set aside of affordable units that are designated for low and moderate income. A developer is entitled to a builder's remedy if (1) it succeeds in Mount Laurel litigation; (2) it proposes a project with a substantial amount of affordable housing, and (3) the site is suitable, i.e. the municipality fails to meet its burden of proving that the site is environmentally constrained or construction of the project would represent bad planning. Southern Burlington County NAACP v. Mt. Laurel Twp., 92 N.J. 158, 279–80 (1983).

A successful developer in a builder's remedy suit is entitled to a court ordered zoning designation, including all aspects of zoning such as density, setbacks, building heights, lot coverage, etc. to accommodate its proposed inclusionary project.  Municipalities in builder's remedy lawsuits may be held liable for the fees of a special master appointed by the court to assist in developing the zoning scheme on the affected property.

Show All Answers

1. What is Affordable Housing?
2. What is the Fair Share Housing Center?
3. Is the Township required to provide an opportunity for Affordable Housing units?
4. Why can’t the Township’s affordable housing litigation be discussed publicly?
5. Does Millburn have an Affordable Housing Plan?
6. Why are the courts in control of determining Millburn’s affordable housing obligation?
7. Will a court consider the economic impact to the community, including schools?
8. Where can I learn more about Millburn’s current Affordable Housing situation?
9. What are ways the Township can satisfy its obligation to provide for affordable housing?
10. What is a motion to intervene in the Township’s Housing Element and Fair Share Plan?
11. What is a builder's remedy lawsuit?
12. How can builder’s remedy lawsuits be avoided?
13. How likely is it that a municipality can successfully defend a builder’s remedy lawsuit?
14. What opportunity would there be for public comment on the Township’s affordable housing Plan?
15. Where can I find information on 85 Woodland Road, LLC., et al. v. Township of Millburn, et al.?
16. What would have happened if the Township had not settled with Fair Share Housing on it Housing Element and Fair Share Plan?
17. Why have settlement negotiations taken so long?
18. How many units of affordable housing is the township obligated to provide and by when?
19. What is the status of the 75 units of 100% affordable housing at the 11 Main Street development (a portion of the DPW facility)?
20. Other than capital constraint, can the Township buy back existing apartment buildings and turn them into affordable housing to satisfy the obligation?
21. Are the developers obligated to keep the ‘affordable units’ permanent?
22. Does the township have any long term strategic urban planning to make sure that traffic, environmental, road, water, sewage, school, etc. will be well planned ahead of any constructions?
23. Will there be any new obligations?
24. Under the current agreement, how long does Millburn retain immunity against any builder’s remedy lawsuits?