Friday, March 14, 2008

Tucson developer: City rules costing me $12 million

[Source: B. Poole, Tucson Citizen] -- A local developer was poised to sue the city Wednesday, claiming a change in the city building code sucked more than $12 million of value out of 23 midtown properties. The change - which requires, in part, surveys to determine the historic significance of properties targeted for demolition and of ones nearby - applies to homes within the 1953 city limits. It severely reduces property values, developer Michael Goodman said Monday.

"No developer wants to . . . tie up a piece of property that he is going to work on for months and months, expending a tremendous amount of money and effort only to be told that you can't . . . tear it down," he said. Goodman said he thinks the code change was aimed specifically at stopping him and other developers from doing something the city has in other ways encouraged - infill development. The suit is among the first in the state to test the state Property Rights Preservation Act, approved by voters in 2006. The law requires governments to compensate property owners if land-use laws reduce their property's value. Goodman's claim is the second major case in the state to test the act; the first being in Flagstaff, said Clint Bolick, a Scottsdale attorney representing Goodman.

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo source: Renee Bracamonte, Tucson Citizen.]