This Comment is divided into six parts. Part II examines the historical and constitutional understandings and application of eminent domain and the public use requirement. Part III analyzes cases decided under the U.S. and Washington constitutions in which courts upheld condemnors' rights to abandon or fail to fulfill the public use of the condemned property. Part IV discusses cases outside of Washington in which courts have upheld the validity of takings even though the condemnor subsequently abandoned or failed to fulfill the public use. These cases illustrate the need for more substantive and procedural protections for condemnees. Part V argues that allowing condemnors to abandon the public use is inconsistent with the public use requirement of the federal and Washington constitutions. This Part also examines possible procedural and substantive protections to protect condmnees from arbitrary or speculative takings and recommends that the legislature enact some, but not all, of these protections.
Cristin Kent, Condemned if They Do, Condemned if They Don't: Eminent Domain, Public Use Abandonment, and the Need for Condemnee Protections, 30 SEATTLE U. L. REV. 503 (2006).