June 09, 2008

Faegre & Benson Wins Eminent Domain Suit in Telluride

Faegre & Benson LLP successfully represented the town of Telluride, Colorado, in its effort to condemn 570 acres of land known as the Valley Floor for open space and park purposes.

The Colorado Supreme Court on June 2 ruled the state Legislature was without authority to pass a statute—lobbied for by the Valley Floor land owner—that sought to take away Telluride's constitutional power of eminent domain.

The ruling ends years of litigation and controversy over the acquisition of this property, which is strategically located at the entrance to Telluride, one of the most beautiful and well-known ski resort areas in the country.

When a jury from nearby Delta County awarded the landowner $50 million for the property, citizens mounted a grassroots effort and raised the entire award amount.

The Court's decision, confirming the town's legal authority to condemn, guarantees the scenic gateway to Telluride will be preserved in perpetuity for the enjoyment of Telluride citizens and visitors.

Leslie A. Fields and Jack (John) R. Sperber, both partners in the firm's Denver office, led the Faegre & Benson team in representing the town of Telluride.

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