Law Prof: ‘Highly Abusive Blight Condemnation’ for AY


Atlantic Yards Report and Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn point to an article by law professor Ilya Somin entitled “Let There Be Blight: Blight Condemnations in New York after Goldstein and Kaur” that will be published in the Fordham Urban Law Journal. The article looks at the blight condemnations used to justify the application of eminent domain for Atlantic Yards and Columbia and characterizes them as “highly abusive.” Atlantic Yards Report notes that Somin says the “extraordinarily broad definition of ‘blight’” used for Atlantic Yards is at “odds with the text of the New York Constitution, which allows blight condemnations only in ‘substandard and insanitary areas.’” Somin also argues that the blight studies were predetermined and concludes that the precedents set by Atlantic Yards and Columbia mean “there are virtually no remaining constitutional limits on blight condemnations in New York state.”
Law Professor on Atlantic Yards and Columbia Eminent Domain Cases [AY Report]
“New Lows in Dubious ‘Blight’ Condemnations” [DDDB]
Photo by threecee.

6 Comment

  • Wow really! a Cato Institute Law Professor dedicated to the cause of extreme property rights and an extremely conservative view of government’s role, is against the ED used at AY.

    Amazing – the more immediate question is can DDDB and Norman Older find even a single other position taken by this professor that they agree with….I suspect not.

    • blowfish

      that’s not the immediate question, that’s a useless question fsrq. The question is do any other reputable law professors take the opposite view. That answer would shed more light on the constitutional question.

    • blowfish

      that’s not the immediate question, that’s a useless question fsrq. The question is do any other reputable law professors take the opposite view. That answer would shed more light on the constitutional question.

  • blowfish – lawyers much more relevant than any “professor” take the opposite position. Those lawyers are generally referred to the NYS Judiciary and the Federal Judiciary – and they have been ruling in favor of ED along the lines of AY since the beginning of the republics founding.

  • blowfish – lawyers much more relevant than any “professor” take the opposite position. Those lawyers are generally referred to the NYS Judiciary and the Federal Judiciary – and they have been ruling in favor of ED along the lines of AY since the beginning of the republics founding.

  • Chiotakis: How is building infrastructure in China different than in the U.S.?

    Schmitz: Well, China’s at a completely different stage in its development as a country than where the U.S. is. The U.S. is largely built out, but there are parts of China that aren’t yet connected to a road, so that’s part of the reason China’s fast-tracking all this development.

    Chiotakis: And that’s why we’ve seen high speed trains appear so quickly in China?

    Schmitz: Yeah, I mean, five years ago, China didn’t even have high-speed trains. Today, China has the largest high-speed rail network in the world.

    I talked to China economist Arthur Kroeber today about all of this. He said you wouldn’t see this kind of pace in the U.S., because environmental and property laws would hold up the whole process. He said Chinese leaders are worried about the same thing coming their way.

    Arthur Kroeber: People will have more environmental concerns, there will be more secure property rights so people will not say it’s fine for you to demolish my village so that you can build a highway through it.

    So in a way, China’s government sees that it has a window in which it can build all these huge projects.