The eminent-domain-abuse-lovin' NY Times has a front page story about the inability of the controversial project in New London, Connecticut to get underway:
Wary of public disapproval and challenges from groups like the Institute for Justice, the law firm that represented the holdouts in court, the state and the city have halted plans to evict the remaining residents. Investors are concerned about building on land that some people consider a symbol of property rights. At the same time, contract disputes and financial uncertainty have delayed construction even in areas that have been cleared.
With so many complications, some people are unsure whether the city's initial vision for the property - a mix of housing, hotel and office space intended to transform part of its riverfront and bolster a declining tax base - is even realistic anymore.
"Winning took so long," said Mayor Jane L. Glover, "that the plan may not be as viable in 2005 or 2006 or 2007."
That's one way to look at it. Another way is to acknowledge that the project was misguided from the get-go, which is one of the reasons why the city had to resort to eminent domain in the first place. If there had been a true market demand for the luxury hotel blah blah blah, you'd figure the developers would have bought the people out fair and square.
Deeper in the Times story comes this chestnut:
One point of contention: [Developer] Corcoran Jennison is resisting pressure from the city to build a waterfront hotel first, as was initially planned, out of concern that there is no market for one.
Oh, come on, boys, just build it on mostly on the taxpayers' dime and they will come. Whole thing here.
Reason has been covering the Kelo case since the get-go, back in 2001, when the then-mayor of New London was saying nobody wanted to live in the Fort Trumbull area anyway because it smelled so bad (which of course makes it a great site for a posh resort). Our interview in the November 2005 with the Institute for Justice's Scott Bullock, who represented the good guys in front of the Supreme Court, is online here.