Buffalo News Editorial Board – “Tonawanda is justified in taking former Huntley site by eminent domain”

Over the break, New York’s Court of Appeals, the highest court in New York, declined to hear an appeal from NRG, the owner of the former Huntley generating station, in their push to overturn a lower court ruling in favor of the Town of Tonawanda’s Eminent Domain claim for the property.

This is a big win – what this means is that, barring NRG appealing to the US Supreme Court, the Town of Tonawanda can finally move forward to directly claim the property and open it up for development!

The Buffalo News Editorial Board concurs, writing this week that “NRG offers little to no justification for sitting on waterfront property that could be reused to substantial community benefit” and that “With seven years elapsed and a long road of cleanup and development ahead, it’s time for NRG to step aside, and if that takes place through successful eminent domain proceedings so be it. The residents of the Town of Tonawanda have waited too long.”

Our Tonawanda Tomorrow Team has been somewhat neutral on this eminent domain claim, but is generally in favor – our biggest concern is, regardless of whoever is the owner, that all redevelopment must be done with resident leadership and a Community Benefits Agreement or other legally binding framework that prioritizes residents as well as waterfront access with the new site use.

We applaud this news, and look forward to working with the Town to ensure that these protections are included as the redevelopment process moves forward.

If you are interested in joining our Tonawanda Tomorrow Team, please contact Bridge for more information.

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