The Arizona Daily Star interviewed me recently regarding my successful representation of multiple property owners whose property the City of Tucson condemned using eminent domain for the Downtown Links project:
Avvo, an online legal services marketplace, has awarded Sammartino Law Group its 2015 Clients' Choice Award for my 2015 service to Real Estate and Land Use and Zoning clients.
I am extremely grateful to have been able to meet the real estate legal needs of southern Arizona property owners, primarily through my focus on condemnation and eminent domain law. This year, I have helped clients who have had or will have their private property taken for the Grant Road Improvement Project, the Downtown Links Project, the Los Reales Buffer Project, the Houghton Road: Broadway Blvd. to 22nd St. Project, and the Tangerine Road Corridor Project. In 2016, I hope to add the Broadway Boulevard Project to that list, among other projects.
It is important to me that this recognition from Avvo comes because of what I have done for my clients. I give thanks to those who hired or considered hiring me to help them, and I wish all past, present, and future clients good luck and good health in the new year.
As many Tucsonans are aware, the Tucson voters passed the $2.1B Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) plan in May of 2006. Since then, the RTA has been working on delivering 35 roadway corridor projects that impact Tucson and Pima County property owners. Of these 35 projects, most of them require the implementing agency to acquire private property through eminent domain.
Here is a list of the 35 roadway corridor projects:
No matter how you quantify it, this is a large public works project, or series of projects. The RTA website does not supply easy-to-understand project status information, so I have distilled the information the site does provide to provide the same list of projects along with each project's (somewhat) current status:
The RTA has completed 9 projects, is currently constructing 6, is designing 11, and is waiting to begin 9 future projects. The 20 projects in-design or for the future (and even some of the projects under construction, like Grant Road) will likely require more condemnation of private property, and those property owners may want to consult an eminent domain attorney to advise them of their rights.
Any Tucson resident (part-time or full-time) of any age can greatly appreciate this excellent photo album from the Arizona Daily Star of downtown Tucson "before redevelopment." These photos from the 1960s and beyond capture the historic beauty of downtown Tucson.
One photograph shows how difficult roadway planning can be. The photograph below shows a 1965 model for urban renewal including a hypothetical east-west urban freeway connecting the east side of downtown directly to the interstate; next to the historic photograph is an aerial photo of the same area in 2013 with the area of the proposed 1965 freeway overlaid with green.
This urban freeway was obviously never built. The Downtown Links project, linking the Barraza-Aviation Parkway to Interstate 10, is the modern incarnation of this project. Our east-west downtown connector, instead of aligning with Cushing Street, will instead look like this: