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I'm trying to find the English translation for the Dutch word 'welstandsgebied', which roughly translates to something like 'wealth zone' in the context of land use control by municipalities.

A 'wealth zone' is an area that is controlled by a municipality (which issues building permits) to ensure that architectural cohesion is maintained on a predefined level. To my knowledge, nearly all built-up areas in the Netherlands are part of such a zone.

What is the proper English word or expression for this?

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closed as off topic by Mr. Shiny and New 安宇, Matt E. Эллен, Mitch, aedia λ, kiamlaluno Oct 3 '11 at 18:50

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Translation requests are generally off-topic. – Mr. Shiny and New 安宇 Oct 3 '11 at 14:11
"Covenanted property" may correspond to the concept you ask about. Also see "business park". – jwpat7 Oct 3 '11 at 19:02

In the US, zoning laws vary a great deal from state to state, city to city.

From your question, it sounds as if the municipality only has the right to regulate architecture in very specific zones.

In my experience in various cities in the US, the whole city is affected by zoning laws, with various areas marked 'residential zone', 'industrial zone', 'historical zone', etc., and with local buildings regulated accordingly.

For instance, in Washington, DC, no building is allowed to stand taller than the Washington Monument - would this make the whole city a welstandsgebied?

Federal land, meanwhile, is not affected by state or local zoning laws.

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To my knowledge, nearly all built-up areas in the Netherlands are part of such a zone. I've updated my question accordingly. I'm starting to realize now that 'welstandsgebied' is not so much about the markings (residential, industrial etc.) you are describing but rather what you are saying by giving the Washington Monument example. What I'm looking for is a word to describe a zone for which such a regulation applies. Perhaps something like 'Aesthetic regulation zone'. – Sandor Drieënhuizen Oct 3 '11 at 11:05
"Aesthetic zoning" is indeed a legal concept. In this article (real-estate-law.freeadvice.com/real-estate-law/zoning/…), places affected by aesthetic zoning ordinances are called "aesthetic zoning areas." – onomatomaniak Oct 3 '11 at 11:12
No building in the UK may be erected or subtantially altered without planning permission, so to that extent the whole of the UK, too, is a 'welstandsgebied'. We also have 'listed buildings' of special architectural and historic interest to which particular restrictions apply. – Barrie England Oct 3 '11 at 11:57

Conservation area, possibly.

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Judging from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conservation_area, that's more about natural features but 'Welstandsgebied' isn't so much about that. Think of keeping factories out of residential neighbourhoods for example. – Sandor Drieënhuizen Oct 3 '11 at 8:59
No, in the UK it can cover buildings too. This is from the website of English Heritage <english-heritage.org.uk/caring/listing/local/conservation-areas/…;: ‘The first conservation areas were designated in 1967 and there are now over 8,000 conservation areas in England. They are designated for their special architectural and historic interest.’ – Barrie England Oct 3 '11 at 9:43
That link didn't seem to work. Here it is again: english-heritage.org.uk/caring/listing/local/conservation-areas – Barrie England Oct 3 '11 at 9:48
This is quite interesting. I think we're talking about a whole different level of conservation though because just about every urban area in the Netherlands is a 'welstandsgebied' of some sort. This is probably quite a different situation compared to other countries because the Dutch government tends to be rather controlling about things like this. – Sandor Drieënhuizen Oct 3 '11 at 10:09

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