James C Nicholas

James C. Nicholas

Professor Emeritus
Former Associate Director, Environmental and Land Use Law Program



Mailing Address:
Box # Gainesville, FL 32611




Ph.D., University of Illinois M.A., University of Miami B.B.A., University of Miami

Teaching and Scholarship

International expert in natural resource and land use management, Florida growth management legislation, urban land economics, urban and regional planning and environmental and urban problems.

Professional Activities

  • University of Florida: Joined Law faculty in 1985 as Affiliate Professor; Served 1985-92 as Co-Director of Growth Management Studies; Named in 1999 as Associate Director of Environmental and Land Use Law Program. Also UF Professor of Urban & Regional Planning.
  • Florida Atlantic University: Professor of Economics; Associate and Acting Director of Joint Center of Florida Atlantic and Florida International Universities for Environmental and Urban Problems (1969-85).
  • Professional Affiliations: American Planning Association, North American Society of Environmental Law, Urban Land Institute, American Bar Association, Omicron Delta Epsilon, Pi Mu Epsilon, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy.

Land Use Planning and Control (3 or 4 credits) - LAW 6460

  • A study of the legal aspects of the allocation and development of land resources; private controls through covenants and easements; public regulation and control through zoning and subdivision regulation; social, economic and political implications of land regulations; eminent domain; selected current problems such as growth management, historic preservation, environmental regulations, and urban development.
    Prerequisites: Property (LAW 5401).

Techniques of Growth Management (2 credits) - LAW 6930

  • This course will cover three of the more significant techniques of managing growth: development exactions, impact fees, and transferable development rights. The course will focus on the history of these techniques, their current use, and the case law that has evolved. Primary attention will be focused on the use of these techniques in Florida, but not to the exclusion of those of other states.

Growth Management Seminar - LAW 6930

Land Development Planning (3 credits) - URP 6312

  • Standards, criteria, policies, design techniques, and research systems used in designating proposed general distribution; location and extent of the uses of land and of population densities for all public and private land use categories as established by law, regulation, and social and economic justification at all levels of government in the U.S. and abroad.

Urban Land Economics (3 credits) - URP 6542

  • Review of land economics within the context of urban and regional planning.

Seminar on Capital Improvement Finance (1 credit) - URP 6543

  • Methods and means of local government finance of capital improvements.

Representative Articles

  • The Ups and Downs of Growth Management in Florida, Journal of Law and Public Policy (forthcoming).
  • Growth Management and Smart Growth in Florida, 35 Wake Forest Law Review 3 (w/ Ruth Steiner, 2000).
  • State and Regional Land Use Planning: The Evolving Role of the State, 73 St. Johns University Law Review 4 (1999).
  • Perspectives Concerning the Use of Environmental Mitigation Fees as Incentives, 7 (I & II) Environmental Liability 3 (w/ J. Juergensmeyer and E. Basse, 1999).
  • Transferable Development Rights and Alternatives after Suitum, 30 The Urban Lawyer 2 (w/ J. Juergensmeyer and B. Leebrick, 1998).