Saturday, November 29, 2008

Unintended Consequences

The owners of buildings that have been tagged by New York City's Landmarks Preservation Commission are either altering or demolishing buildings before they can be classified as a landmark. Read the story here.

I'm not going to take the time to dig through the fine print of New York City's Landmark Preservation Commission, but if it is like other such commissions and boards around the country, once a piece of property has been designated as historical, the owner is prevented from using the property in any way not approved by the commission. A very strong case can be made that this is a taking.

The commission would be better off buying the property from the owner and preserving the desired building itself. But then that would get in the way of a free lunch.

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