One of the fundamentals of law is that if my actions cause you harm, you can recover your damages from me. If I tell you no thanks, you go to court and a judge will order my assets deprived from me by force, and they will be given to you. It doesn’t matter if I am your neighbor, your employer, a company or the government.
Meanwhile, zoning is what happens when local government is set up. To manage the assessment of taxes, local government assigns parcel numbers to each piece of land in its jurisdiction, and a zoning. The zone assigned to a piece of dirt by a city or county defines what is legal and not legal to build. Thus, zoning has value. Land zoned for no building is not as valuable as the same land zoned for building. This allows for cities to plan, in general terms, how the city will be laid out.
It also means zoning has value. Land on which you can build a house is always worth more than land where you can’t. Accordingly, if you purchased an acre of land that had existing zoning allowing three houses per acre to be built, and the government didn’t let you, you could recover your lost economic investment, plus legal fees, in court. This is called “Inverse Condemnation” but taxpayers call it getting soaked. That’s why it is important to elect men and women of integrity to your city councils and county commissions. Good stewards steer their cities away from inverse condemnation claims.