The case that brought eminent domain into national prominence turned five yesterday.  In that five years Suzette Kelo’s house has been removed from its original location, Pfizer closed its global research and development headquarters in New London, Conn., and the area contains large swaths of vacant land, with no redevelopment to speak of.  However, as a result of the United States Supreme Court ruling allowing the New London redevelopment project to proceed with “economic development” as its public purpose, a large number of states have adopted eminent domain reform, and many state courts have increasingly scrutinized government takings for redevelopment purposes.  

The following links from media outlets, bloggers, and organizations provide a cross-section of why Kelo is still relevant:

Today marks 5 year anniversary of Supreme Court’s ruling in Kelo v. New London, Owners Counsel of America’s Eminent Domain Law Blog

Kelo plus five:  Property still threatened, The Union Leader

 Five years after Kelo, The Daily Caller

 Kelo, five years out, Fredricksburg.com  

Five Years After Kelo: The Sweeping Backlash Against One of the Supreme Court’s Most-Despised Decisions, Institute for Justice  

Libertarians note anniversary of bad Kelo decision, The Libertarian Party  

Marking the Fifth Anniversary of Kelo v. City of New London, Reason.com 

Kelo five years later, The Liberty Papers

 A copy of adopted state eminent domain reform measures can be found at the National Conference of State Legislatures’ website.

A copy of the United States Supreme Court’s opinion in Kelo can be found here.  

For previous posts on our New Jersey Condemnation Law Blog discussing the aftermath of Kelo, please follow the links below:

 Seized, Stalled and Scrapped 

 Kelo Update — Lessons Learned?

 The Aftermath of Kelo – Pfizer Leaving New London  

Pfizer abandons site of infamous Kelo eminent domain taking

 Kelo’s legacy and impact will likely last into the foreseeable future as redevelopment projects still loom as a probable course for development in urban areas and other areas where land is scarce.  However, with appropriate eminent domain reform, while eminent domain for redevelopment purposes is expected to continue, instances of eminent domain abuse should curtail.

The author wishes to acknowledge the assistance of Cory K. Kestner, Esq., of McKirdy & Riskin, PA, in the preparation of this article.

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