Kelo v. City of New London





Kelo v. City of New London

United States Supreme Court 126s.ct. 326 (2005)


New London in the state of Connecticut seized private property belonging to a number of people including Kelo Susette. The city applied its distinguished domain authority to seize the property and sell it to private developers. Kelo Susette and other sued the City of New London on the basis that the city violated the Fifth Amendment takings clause that provides that the government should not take private property for any form of public use without undertaking just compensation to the owners. In addition, the owners emphasized that taking private property and selling such property to private developers did not amount to public use. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of the City of New London.


Did the City of New London violate the Fifth Amendment by taking the property of offering it up for sale with the aim that the developers would enhance the economy the city?


The Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment provides that each state possesses the power of Eminent Domain. In addition, it limits takings by ensuring that just compensation is provided for the taking of private property. Precedence is provided in Chicago, B. & Q. Railroad Co. v. Chicago (1897).


The intention of a “public use” amounted to enhancing the economy of the city with the developments to be undertaken by the private owners. Public use and public purpose were termed as equal in the ruling. This is because the term “public use” was not taken literally and amounted to the greater benefit of the public through enhanced economic activity from the private developments.


United States Supreme Court affirmed the decision ruling in favor of the City of New London.

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