Zoning and Gun Ranges


Before posting this, I did a search of the forum for this issue, but did not see it. That said....what are your thoughts on the possible implications of Bruen on local government zoning regulations prohibiting gun ranges? I have my thoughts...let's hear yours.

Remember the rules, please keep it civil.

Noise and Safety should determine the location of Gun Ranges. Not someone's personal or political agenda to stop firearms anyway they can.

You might note, good indoor gun ranges, although small, are not noisy and safe outside of its walls. An outdoor range, is noisy and there is always the possibility of rounds going over the berm, and less likely, but possible accidents were rounds go the opposite direction of the berm.

I won't blame anyone for not wanting a gun range near their home because of the noise or even safety concerns.

And I can see it being legitimate that industrial area zoning, and future plans do not include the space needed for a rifle range.

But when the space is available in an appropriate area, they should be permitted and no one should be abusing zoning authority to push a personal agendas about firearms.

It's seems there's a NIMBY element in every crowd, whether it be against a prison, a nuclear plant, or a gun range.

Around my old stomping grounds I was accustomed to outdoor ranges being either up in the local mountains or isolated rural areas. There were six outdoor ranges 30 to 60 minutes away. I wonder how close this quarry is to any kind of civilization. I wonder if the city council is motivated by anti-2A sentiments. Is denying any kind business to open infringing on someone's rights? Does it depend on the type of business? My old home town would not allow certain types of businesses inside the city limits. Just across the street from the city limit sign, in the unincorporated area, were several gentlemen's clubs and tattoo parlors. How far away from civilization would be considered "safe" if a bullet left the range?

If I read this right, the main concern seems to be that zoning laws could be infringing on someone's 2A rights because they don't get to build a practice area where they want to. Tough call. I'll have to ponder this some more. ;)

Thank you for your indulgence,

if it is an indoor range, then sound-deadening materials can be doubled up if need be.

all current ranges, open or indoors, should always be "grandfathered in", regarding zoning codes and laws, rules.

it's the same ole, same ole argument on prisons, and where to build them...we NEED MORE of them, but hey, "NOT here you don't"...

if the land is available, and is not being considered for anything, and is "hidden away", then let it be built. the town(s) or cities collect taxes on the building and land, and even sales taxes on the tangibles like targets, ammo, food, beverages, maybe even gun sales, so why deny that..???
In my area there is an outdoor shooting range that's been around since the late 1930's. The range was built in a rural area many miles from the city or the suburbs. In the last 30 years developers have bought surrounding parcels of land and built many new houses. These new residents constantly complain to the county about the noise and have tried to pressure the county to close it down. The range has made concessions and so far, has held its own. There used to be an area Izaak Walton shooting range, but when new housing developments eventually surrounded it, the land was sold and as far as I know a site for a new Izaak Walton range never materialized due to zoning issues. Getting a permit for an outdoor range in central Virginia is darn near impossible. In fact it has gotten to the point that shooting a rifle on your own land increasingly incurs the wrath of the locals. In the county my son lives in a local man had plans to build a range complex where law enforcement agencies could train. However, the residents of several high-end subdivisions protested, and the proposal was withdrawn. The last I heard the land was still zoned for agriculture and the man had becoming interested in pig farming.
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As bizarre as it sounds, the banning of private ownership in real and personal property is still in the works, the gubmint is taking a little bit away every day. Taxing out or zoning out or by eminent domain, applies to your fossil fuel vehicle and equipment too.

Funny thing about the Art of Zoning $ in Chicago - it can’t be that there’s no interest or available vacant space, but there are No open-to-the public, walk-in gun ranges, yet there’s plenty of shooting. Must be that along with the tolerant electorate, our noise abatement and quiet bullet ordinances are rock solid…most of the time… if nobody complains - and nobody does.
Great discussion and good points. I was thinking about this problem from two points of view:

First, the constitution. When someone owns real estate, they own it subject to: police power, eminent domain, taxation, and escheat. Police power mean the state has the power to regulate property use. When I refer to the "state", this includes local governments, since they are agents of their respective state and get their legal authority from the state. Or, the state can reserve rights, such as pre-emption of local laws, such as local laws prohibiting use of firearms. The state (and power given to it's subsidiaries such as counties and towns) has the right to set property use/community standards by virtue of the less often talked about 10th amendment to the constitution. So, if governments have the right to set community standards about land use on behalf of their residents, is that not as equal as the rights guaranteed by 2A?. When there is a conflict between parts of the Bill of Rights, how is that resolved?? On the other hand, does prohibiting development of gun ranges really impinge a person's right to exercise 2A? Truth be told, do you truly need a gun range to exercise your 2A rights? I think so. My town does not have a gun range. I go to a nearby town for range time. If the historical use concept in Bruen is to be applied, didn't certain communities already restrict where firearms could be used, even in 1791?

I think a good example of this problem could be a situation where a person wants to build a nudie bar next to an elementary school. Of course, there is zoning to prohibit this (I hope!). But what if the developer says his 1st amendment rights are being trampled (free speech)?

Second, there is the NIMBY issue brought up by several people. If the community doesn't want a use in it's community, who is to argue? I do think pre-existing use rules over any NIMBY protests, as people already knew what was there when the purchased their property. Buyer beware! Don't whine when a land use was already there.

Here is an example where a bunch of over-exhuberent yahoo's tried to shut down the local airport. I used to know the airport's owners (that's where I learned to fly), as well as some local residents, so I know this was a political agenda to shut their facility down.