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4 Comments on "Recent Developments in Governmental Takings"

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In Penn Central Transp. Co, Justice Brennan stated that the airspace above a property was a valuable property interest, but that a taking cannot be established merely by showing that the owner has been denied the ability to exploit the airspace above the land they own. The owner of the Grand Central Terminal property wanted to build a multistory office tower. However, Grand Central was designated to be a landmark, and under the New York Landmarks Preservation Law, the owner could not go through with his plan to build a 53 or 55-story building. The court held that the Landmarks… Read more »
This article helps answer an important question of: how long, or to what extent can the government regulate a person’s property before it is constituted as a taking? Here, the answer is that the government can actually take it pretty far, stating that the takings clause “is not a vehicle for compensation” but “a method of providing compensation when a regulation has gone too far.” But what is “too far”? For example, in Kelo v. City of New London, 125 S.Ct. 2655 (2005), the case involved a plan to redevelop a portion of the city, building a waterfront conference hotel,… Read more »
It is interesting to see an analysis of the findings of Baycrest Manor as we enter a world increasingly focused on development, and technological and commercial growth. For instance, Baycrest’s findings that wetlands hold non-economic value in addition to economic value and that non-economic factors can play a more important role in governmental action are encouraging outcomes for conservationists. It might be relevant to explore the effect that takings law could have on development abroad. The impact of the BR-163 highway in Brazil on the Amazon rainforest is one such consideration. Additionally, in the last few years Kenya has seen… Read more »
The following cases discuss “taking” through regulations and how the denominator factor effects taking decisions. In Mugler v. Kansas, Kansas amended its constitution to prohibit the sale and production of intoxicating liquor. The liquor prohibition, in effect, caused Mugler’s brewery equipment to be valueless, constituting a taking (under the 14th amendment). In this case, it was not considered a taking even though the effect was a taking. It is not a taking where the government action stops a concrete public harm caused by the owner’s use of the premises because parties do not have the right to harm the public… Read more »