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January 18, 2006

Developers Can't Imagine a World Without Eminent Domain

The NY Times
By Terry Pristin

This story about eminent domain being an important tool for developers becomes more interesting, if you read the first two paragraphs and substitute "The NY Times" for "Bank of America" and "Bruce Ratner" for "Douglas Durst" (emphasis added).

Bank of America agreed to join the developer Douglas Durst in 2003 in building a 54-story tower in the heart of Midtown Manhattan, giving a psychological and economic lift to a city that was still reeling from the destruction of the World Trade Center.

The New York Times agreed to join the developer Bruce Ratner in 2003 in building a 52-story tower in the heart of Midtown Manhattan, giving a psychological and economic lift to a city that was still reeling from the destruction of the World Trade Center.

Mr. Durst said he would not have been able to negotiate with Bank of America or other prospective tenants had the state not authorized him to use eminent domain, a redevelopment tool that is coming under fire in the wake of a United States Supreme Court ruling last June in a Connecticut case.

Mr. Ratner said he would not have been able to negotiate with The NY Times or other prospective tenants had the state not authorized him to use eminent domain, a redevelopment tool that is coming under fire in the wake of a United States Supreme Court ruling last June in a Connecticut case.

Ok, we know that the deals aren't exactly the same, but it's eerie to read what is practically a defense of The Times's own eminent domain actions in the lead.

Q: Is a disclosure in order here, of the fact that the most prominent eminent domain case to be disputed in NYC in recent years involved The NY Times?

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Posted by lumi at January 18, 2006 7:30 AM