BLOG: Condemnation Law

It’s the Same Old Song, This Time in North Carolina

by: Anthony F. Della Pelle
16 Mar 2023
“Now it’s the same old song, But with a different meaning since you been gone” Those lyrics have stood the test of time, as has the use of eminent domain power for purposes that probably were not contemplated by our founding fathers when they created the Bill of Rights to the United States Constitution and... Read More

NJ Supreme Court – Malanga v West Orange – Redevelopment Criteria “d” Interpreted

by: Joseph Grather
15 Mar 2023
Hot off the presses, Chief Justice Rabner issued the Court’s unanimous opinion on Monday reversing a “blight” designation by the Township of West Orange. The full opinion is here. While we are still digesting the opinion, I believe its the first substantive interpretation of criterion “d” by our Supreme Court since Wilson v. City of... Read More

Great 8, Numbers 6 & 7: Cat in the Hat & Suydam

by: Joseph Grather
3 Mar 2023
Two for one Friday, or the Daily-Double! There was a raging debate twenty years ago (tempus fugit!) about what happens when government acquires allegedly contaminated property for public use.  Parties clashed over whether property seized by eminent domain should be valued considering the impact of the alleged contamination upon the value, or whether the contamination... Read More

Eminent Domain and Professional Sports Worlds Collide Again

by: Anthony F. Della Pelle
27 Feb 2023
The SoCal city of Inglewood is back in the news, as it appears likely that it will be seizing private properties again in connection with its new sports and entertainment district which includes a $2 billion basketball arena that will become home to the LA Clippers professional basketball team.  In early 2021, Inglewood first authorized... Read More

LA County Agrees to Pay $20 Million for Bruce’s Beach

by: Michael Realbuto
21 Feb 2023
In November 2021 and August 2022, we covered a story where California’s Governor, Gavin Newsom, signed a law authorizing Los Angeles County to return a beach property taken by eminent domain back to descendants of the original property owners. Those blogs can be found here and here. In mid-July 2022, an oceanfront ceremony officially marked... Read More

Great Eight, No. 5 – Nollan v. California Coastal Commission (US)

by: Joseph Grather
15 Feb 2023
1987. My penultimate year in high school and the year the United States Supreme Court decided Nollan v. California Coastal Commission.  483 U.S. 825. Justice Scalia’s opinion is worthy of a full read, especially the continued – and almost comical – retorts to Justice Brennan’s dissenting opinion. The issue is on appeal is immediately established: ... Read More

Great 8, Number 4: Wilson – Municipal Redevelopment Sustained

by: Joseph Grather
31 Jan 2023
The above image apparently depicts a downtown urban blighted area in Connecticut.  (But, today’s post will not be about the famous Little Pink House in Connecticut). This post is about the judicial progenitor of redevelopment in New Jersey, Wilson v City of Long Branch (1957) (Francis, Assoc. Justice).  The case was the first to challenge... Read More

Harrison Tp Redevelopment Faces Heavy Opposition

by: Joseph Grather
26 Jan 2023
A quick break from the “great 8” – – reports that a rural Gloucester County municipality has been targeted in two lawsuits seeking to invalidate a “warehouse” friendly redevelopment plan. To refresh everyone’s recollection, the New Jersey Constitution declares that “redevelopment” of a “blighted area” is a public use and public purpose for which... Read More

Great 8, Number 3: United States v. Causby

by: Joseph Grather
20 Jan 2023
Thomas Lee and Tinie Causby lived outside of Greensboro, North Carolina and operated a chicken farm on their 2.8 acre property. In May of 1942 – about 5 months after the bombing of Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 – the United States leased the municipal airport adjacent to Causby’s chicken farm to operate military... Read More

Great 8, Number 2: Washington Market – Early Inverse Case

by: Joseph Grather
13 Jan 2023
Washington Market Enterprises, Inc. v. City of Trenton, 68 N.J. 107 (1975) is number two on the list. The case is included because it is probably one of the earliest New Jersey inverse condemnation cases alleging a “regulatory taking” where the owner prevailed.  Our Supreme Court framed the issue:  “This case presents the question of... Read More