This Comment addresses the controversial Kelo v. City of New London decision and focuses on the state of Texas’ response to Kelo through its enactment of section 2206.001 of the Texas Government Code. This Comment discusses the implications of this statute in the realm of professional and college sports stadiums in Texas. Additionally, this Comment provides a background in the evolution of the eminent domain doctrine and prominent Supreme Court decisions expanding an authorized entity’s eminent domain power under a broadened definition of the entity providing a “public use.” The arguments are analyzed for whether Texas college and professional stadiums provide a public use, concluding that land takings from private landowners for the purpose of building sports stadiums constitutes a permissible public use under the Kelo standard. Land takings to build a sports stadium likely constitute a public use because it provides access to public participation, national prominence, revenue, tax benefits, and hurricane shelter for its citizens. Finally, this Comment proposes legislative amendment to section 2206.001(c) of the Texas Government Code that would raise the threshold for landowner’s compensation from 100% of the fair market value to 150%—250% of the fair market value of the property. A higher compensation would reimburse the landowner for the equity value of the property and would help prevent potential holdouts.
Eminent Domain a Decade After Kelo: Are Takings to Build Professional and College Sports Stadiums in Texas a Valid Public Use?,
Tex. A&M J. Prop. L.
Available at: https://scholarship.law.tamu.edu/journal-of-property-law/vol5/iss3/11