‘Negotiating’ development: enhancing the legitimacy of developer obligations for offsite costs in private law agreements

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The legitimacy and accountability of developer obligations [DOs] for off-site costs have been criticized in the Netherlands. Several Dutch municipalities ask these DOs for a wide variety of purposes, calculated through different calculation methods. There often seems to be a lack of clarity about the link between the contributing developments and the DOs for off-site costs and sometimes these DOs are even paid for provisions that will not be realized at all. Additionally, the recovery of these obligations via private law agreements involves uncertainties about the enforceability and in particular about the scope of costs that can be recovered. Through five case studies, this qualitative research investigates how the legitimacy of DOs for off-site costs can be enhanced in private law agreements. It is concluded that the legitimacy of DOs for offsite costs can be enhanced by input, throughput and output aspects of legitimacy and that the political, legal, social and ethical dimension of legitimacy must be viewed in conjunction to get to integrated ways of enhancing the legitimacy of DOs. The study provides a framework to have a dialogue on the different dimensions of legitimacy and the multiple interests affected, despite the intricate connections and inherent contradictions that can occur between and within the various dimensions of legitimacy.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen