Construction Civil Procedure Zoning, Planning & Land Use

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Appellate Court Notes

Supreme Court Advance Release Opinions: SC19408 - NPC Offices, LLC v. Kowaleski - In this case, the Supreme Court reversed the Appellate Court. The Appellate Court had agreed with the Trial Court that a driveway...more

U.S. Supreme Court Denies Review of California Supreme Court Decision Upholding San Jose Inclusionary Housing Ordinance

February 29, 2016 was a notable leap year day for the United States Supreme Court. To the surprise of most in the courtroom that day, Justice Clarence Thomas asked his first question from the bench in more than 10 years. The...more

The Ready-Made Suit of Standing

Chief Superior Court Judge James H. Pou Bailey informed lawyers - “Justice under the law is like buying a suit off the rack. It doesn’t fit anybody perfectly, but it fits a lot of people fairly well.” Sometimes, an...more

FERC denies Oregon LNG project applications

U.S. energy regulators have denied applications to site, construct, and operate the proposed Jordan Cove liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal, an associated pipeline and related facilities slated for development in...more

What Does the US Supreme Court Ruling Mean for Local Affordable Housing Laws?

On February 29, the US Supreme Court denied certiorari in California Building Industry Association v. City of San Jose, 61 Cal. 4th 435 (2015), and leaves standing a unanimous decision by the California Supreme Court...more

Inflatable flashboards meet historic dam

A hydropower project in Lowell, Massachusetts won the right to replace wooden flashboards with an inflatable pneumatic crest gate system -- and now seeks to modify provisions requiring specific actions to mitigate impacts on...more

Horse Of A Different Color: CEQA Does Not Require EIR Due To Psychological And Social Impacts From Closure Of Beloved Equestrian...

In a March 4, 2016 published opinion, the Fourth District Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s judgment requiring an EIR for a small 12-home rural subdivision project based on the “psychological and social” impacts of...more

Property Owners and Developers Take a Hit from Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court opened the door for a new form of exaction from property owners and real estate developers by refusing to hear an appeal from a decision by the California Supreme Court upholding San Jose’s inclusionary...more

Supreme Court Denies Certiorari in Challenge to San Jose’s Inclusionary Housing Ordinance; Justice Thomas Suggests The Issue is...

On February 29, 2016, the Supreme Court of the United States denied the California Building Industry’s petition for writ of certiorari seeking review of the decision of the California Supreme Court in California Building...more

Washington State Court of Appeals Holds Vested Permit Applications Are Not Subject to New Municipal Stormwater Requirements

The development community won a victory in Division Two of the Washington State Court of Appeals in a ruling that excludes pending permit applications from the new low-impact development stormwater regulations that large...more

Design Liability and Right of Way Risk Allocation for Design-Build Projects

Design liability and right-of-way risk allocation are topics addressed in a legal research digest recently published by the Transportation Research Board’s National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP). The report,...more

Moratoriums Do Not Prohibit Billboard Relocations

Because billboards are typically near public transit, they are routinely impacted by public projects such as street widenings, highway and freeway expansions, and grade separation projects. When impacted, billboard companies...more

California Supreme Court Rejects Mandatory "Reverse CEQA" Analysis

The California Supreme Court issued its long awaited opinion on December 17, 2015, in California Building Industry Association v. Bay Area Air Quality Management District (CBIA v. BAAQMD), commonly referred to as the "Reverse...more

California Supreme Court Holds “CEQA-In-Reverse” Is Not The Norm, Reverses And Remands First District’s Judgment In CBIA v. BAAQMD

In a unanimous 24-page opinion authored by newly seated Justice Cuellar and filed December 17, 2015, the California Supreme Court resolved a fundamental issue regarding CEQA’s scope, holding that – with certain specific...more

Supreme Court to Resolve Split on Court Review of Clean Water Act Jurisdictional Determinations

The U.S. Supreme Court decided last week to review a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit that jurisdictional determinations under the Clean Water Act are final agency actions subject to judicial...more

Denver City Council Passes Construction Defect Litigation Reform Ordinance

After successive failures to pass similar legislation at the state level, the Denver City Council is following Lakewood and other municipalities to pass reforms to curb construction defect litigation. Designed to address...more

Differing Site Condition Defense Rejected

The Court of Appeals of Washington recently decided King County v. Vinci Construction Grands Projects/Parsons RCI/Frontier-Kemper, JV, a dispute between a joint venture contractor (the Contractor) and King County, Washington...more

Land Use Matters: Alston & Bird LLP, October 2015

At its October 27, 2015, meeting, the Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to create a new dedicated Affordable Housing Program budget unit and approved setting aside $100 million for the creation and operation of both...more

No Damages for First Nations Blockade - Supreme Court of Canada Denies Leave to Appeal in Moulton Contracting Ltd.

The Supreme Court of Canada recently denied leave to appeal in Moulton Contracting Ltd. v British Columbia, confirming the BC Court of Appeal’s decision (2015 BCCA 89) overturning an award of $1.75 million in damages against...more

Lesser Prairie Chicken Listing Vacated by Federal Court - What It Means for Energy Development

Last week, in a decision that surprised many, a federal court in Texas overturned the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s (Service) decision last year to list the lesser prairie chicken (LEPC) as “threatened” under the federal...more

Homebuilders Welcome Recent Court Decisions

Arizona homebuilders will welcome with open arms two recent legal rulings of substantial impact to their industry. In the first decision, on July 28, 2015, in Sullivan v. Pulte Home Corp., No. 1 CA-CV 14-0199, the Arizona...more

Flushing Out the Safe Harbor: “General Land Area Minimum” Offers Newton No 40B Shelter

Municipalities long unable to achieve ten percent affordable housing are now turning more frequently to a different Safe Harbor to block development of low and moderate income housing – compliance with the “General Land Area...more

Real World: An Update from Dechert's London Finance and Real Estate Group - July 2015: Enforcement of Restrictive Covenants Under...

Under a building scheme, where restrictive covenants are imposed on the original plot owners within a development for the mutual benefit of the plots, subsequent owners may enforce those covenants against each other. In...more

California Supreme Court Paves the Way for Ownership Inclusionary Housing - Many Developers Maintain That the Costs Associated...

In a highly anticipated case affecting residential development throughout California, the California Supreme Court unanimously rejected the California Building Industry Association’s (CBIA) challenge to the City of San Jose’s...more

California Supreme Court Upholds Validity of Inclusionary Housing Ordinances

On June 15, 2015, the California Supreme Court issued its decision in California Building Industry Association v. City of San Jose, No. S212072, unanimously upholding the validity of inclusionary housing programs in...more

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