EVERGLADES RESTORATION: A CONSTITUTIONAL TAKINGS ANALYSIS

Sharon S. Tisher

This Article discusses the impact of physical takings law on the restoration of the Florida Everglades. The process of restoring the Everglades entails dismantling or modifying previously constructed flood control structures. This hydraulic restoration will affect thousands of acres of privately-owned lands through invasion of floodwaters and elevated groundwaters. The Article suggests that, notwithstanding the flooding, a categorical physical takings analysis should not be imposed because hydrological restoration differs from traditional physical takings. The Article notes that the government action does not impose an entirely new burden on property; revisionary engineering merely restores land to a natural condition. The Article concludes that there is little legal support for the contention that property owners have protected property interests in artificially altered land when the alteration was predominantly at government expense.

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