by Barry Smith
As the date for oral arguments on North Carolina’s Map Act approaches in the N.C. Supreme Court, plaintiffs attorneys have released a video showing a neighborhood affected by the act.
The video shows a number of houses, both one-story and two-story, in a cul-de-sac. Most are quite charming, well-kept houses. One, however, stands out.
The two-story house, which attorney Matthew Bryant says is already owned by the DOT, is overgrown with vegetation. It appears to be vacant. No cars are parked in the driveway, and about a half-dozen newspapers have been left in the driveway.
The Map Act allows the DOT to file maps of highway corridors with local planning offices, preventing building permits from being issued on those parcels for up to three years.
The N.C. Court of Appeals ruled unanimously that such a filing represents the use of eminent domain by the DOT, requiring the DOT to pay just compensation.
The DOT appealed the ruling. The case will be heard in the N.C. Supreme Court on Feb. 16