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Saturday, July 09, 2005

One result of Kelo

Thanks to the Supreme Court, local governments can take land from private individual A and give it to private individual B if person B plans to "develop" the land and pay more taxes as a result. The decision is likely to have rep urcussions for quite some time.

Here in Arlington, we have our own land grab under way for the Cowboys stadium project. The stadium could have been built on several acres of pavement and warehouses that are essentially empty, could have been built on land where the old Turnpike Stadium used to stand, but instead will be built on top of an existing neighborhood with property being paid for, thus far, but with the threat of eminent domain now unveiled.

Little recognized by the locals, but announced on the city's website, it seems that the 75 acres originally planned to be taken for the stadium won't be enough for the parking, etc. that the Cowboys claim they need. The upshot? More land being taken than originally planned - after all, according to Kelo all that matters is more taxes and the potential for more jobs.

Here's the city's map of the proposed Cowboys stadium. You can see Ameriquest Field nee The Ballpark in Arlington in the northeast corner. The green-space that is not part of the stadium project is actually Corps of Engineer wetlands (is there not some environmental group that is willing to argue against the stadium project?).

From the city's website comes this little nugget from our mayor:

"This continues to be an evolving process," Mayor Robert Cluck said. "After further review with stadium consultants, it has become evident that additional parcels will be necessary to properly serve the drainage, access and parking needs of the Cowboys Stadium."

What that means is that still more property must be taken from several A's to be given to one B. Any recourse for these individuals? These folks will have to take the city's offer or see Kelo.

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