Marietta City Council to Consider Eminent Domain

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The Marietta City Council adopted a resolution to allow the city to use eminent domain to obtain rights of entry for six properties near the intersection of Seventh, Pike and Greene Streets.

Rights of entry are needed to allow the city to proceed with a pedestrian and traffic safety upgrade at that intersection that has been scheduled for next year. A significant portion of the estimated $2 million project will be funded by the Ohio Department of Transportation. ODOT set a deadline of December 16th for the city to obtain the needed rights of way.

Six parcels of land including the Apex True Value, Captain D’s, Food 4 Less, Marietta College, Qdoba and Sheila’s Hair Shoppe and Tanning, are affected. Letters notifying the property owners of the city’s intent to purchase the rights of way at fair market value were mailed in late October. According to the city’s safety service director, not all of the property owners had responded to the letters of intent. Earlier in 2013, $227,000 was appropriated for acquisition of the rights-of-way.

Marietta City engineer Joe Tucker said the Ohio Department of Transportation employs the same eminent domain approach taken by the City of Marietta so that roadway projects can be kept on track.

“A definite schedule has been set for the Seventh, Pike and Greene intersection project which has a projected sale date of March 13, 2014,” Tucker said. “The contract also has to be sold at that time so that the project work doesn’t interfere with the soccer season at Marietta College.”

Property near the college’s soccer field is one of the six properties required by the city to complete the intersection.

Paul Bertram III, City of Marietta Law Director, said adoption of the resolution to allow the use of eminent domain would become necessary if the city did not receive permission for rights of entry to the properties by December 13th. Adoption of the resolution would permit the city to do a “quick taking” if one or more of the property owners did not sign the right of entry document.

If you are a property owner who has received notice that a government agency requires your property, your are entitled to legal representation to make sure your property rights are protected. The Ohio eminent domain attorneys at Clark, Perdue and List.