Don’t Forget the Variables

By Pete Waldman, Esquire
Partner at Weiss Serota Helfman Cole + Berman

The two variables that I would like to focus on in this writing are drainage and landscaping.  Both items must be paid attention to when seeking to acquire land from improved properties.  Drainage needs to be maintained, so that neither the property or the adjoining roadway experience improper drainage, and depending on the jurisdiction where the property is located there may be strict rules regarding the required landscaping.

It is important to understand how drainage works on the  property from which you are seeking to acquire land.  Where are the drainage improvements located, what type of drainage system is being used, where are the critical drainage points (high and low areas of the property).  If you don’t understand all of these things in regard to the drainage system of a particular property you will potentially fail to understand the true cost in regard to improvements and potential cures of acquiring the necessary land from various properties needed for your project.

This is also true when it comes to landscaping and greenspace requirements.  Many jurisdictions have strict rules regard landscaping and greenspace that may require the full, or almost complete replacement of landscaping that is impacted by a taking.  If you don’t understand these requirements when first analyzing the acquisition requirements of a particular project you may end up with much higher costs than originally anticipated.  Forgetting these variables is a mistake that could impact the viability of your project.