• The Supreme Court's Decision in Kelo v. City of New London: A Landmark Development Regarding the Governmental Power of Eminent Domain
  • July 21, 2005 | Authors: Craig E. Stewart; Erica L. Reilley
  • Law Firms: Jones Day - San Francisco Office; Jones Day - Los Angeles Office
  • The Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution says that the government may condemn private property by eminent domain only for "public use." For more than a century, the United States Supreme Court has grappled with what kinds of uses qualify as a "public use." The Court has held that takings necessary to build railroads, public utilities, and highways are for public use. The Court also has held that takings necessary to eliminate slum or blighted conditions are for public use, and it even has held that takings necessary to break up the concentration of land ownership in Hawaii and restore normal order to the local real estate market there are for public use.