Since the early days of nuisance law, but especially since the early twentieth century and the validation of zoning ordinances, land use planning and management have been fundamental roles of local government. As evinced by its state code, the Commonwealth of Virginia recognizes the essential role that localities play in land use planning. The Virginia Code requires that localities create planning commissions, adopt comprehensive plans, and, if the localities have adopted zoning ordinances, establish boards of zoning appeals. As most of the implementation of these mandates is left to individual localities, the form of implementation is not uniform but naturally varies from county to county and city to city.
Andrew E. Tarne, Land Use and Zoning Law, 47 U. Rich. L. Rev. 223 (2012).