The answer depends on what you mean by zoning. Houston famously does not have zoning, but it does have land-use and development regulations that, in certain circumstances, produce zoning-like results. Drone delivery pilot programs are active in several U.S. communities already, and McKinsey notes that (with favorable regulatory conditions) drone delivery could soon be cost competitive with conventional modes.
In the April issue of Zoning Practice, “Drone Zoning: Urban Planning’s Next Frontier?” Troy Rule explores barriers and opportunities to apply zoning concepts to local drone-use regulations. Federal and, in some places, state preemption complicates local efforts to regulate the use of drones. Yet, Rule suggests there are at least three potential types of regulations for planners to explore with the communities they serve.
Soaring to new heights, together.
Be sure to visit the BWU Technology Partnerships Initiative website to learn more about how our NEOFIX program drives economic growth, promotes policy and infrastructure to improve drone safety and efficiency in various industries, and ensures that drone technology is being used responsibly.