Brad Kuhn Discusses COVID-19-Related Street Closure Taking Case That May Test Receptivity of Federal Courts

10.07.2020
Daily Journal

Brad Kuhn was quoted in the Daily Journal article, “Lawsuit May Test How Receptive US Courts Are To Taking Cases” (subscription required). The article provides an analysis of a new lawsuit, Kramer Vineyard Properties LLC v City of Palm Springs, where the plaintiff, a shopping center operator, has sued the City in Federal Court, alleging that the city's "partial closure of a major boulevard to allow outdoor dining" amounts to an unlawful regulatory taking.

The plaintiff owns a shopping center that is located on Palm Canyon Drive, which the City of Palm Springs allowed to be partially closed beginning September 3 to enable outdoor dining. Attorneys for the property owner argue that the City has not provided alternative access to the retailers along the closed portion of Palm Canyon Drive.

Many lawyers in the eminent domain community have posited that it will be "difficult for the courts to let the challenge stand, strictly from precedent given long existing case law allowing government entities to do street work [and] repairs."

Commenting on the issue, Brad said, "At the end of the day, there are so many case laws that allow governments within [their] police powers to make changes to public streets....Courts have also held that not every governmental interference with right of access constitutes a taking entitling the property owner to compensation."

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