For four years, Texas Central Railway (TCR) has been planning the country’s first bullet train between Dallas and Houston. But this planning did not take into account how many landowners it will displace or affect. Luckily, our very own Texas eminent domain lawyer Glenn Sodd has offered support to landowners by representing recent cases and local landowners, including David Risinger.
Texas Central Railway and Eminent Domain
In Texas, state law allows the government or any private entity granted permission by the government (in TCR’s case) to enter into the land to conduct surveys. This allows for surveying of the land to assess the impact and applies to railroads, pipelines, telecommunications, power lines and more.
Texas Landowners Fighting Back
Approximately 100 Texas landowners formed an alliance as “Texans Against High Speed Rail.” Some local property owners have been refusing to allow surveyors on their land, and with the help of Dawson & Sodd, PLLC they may be able to get the cases against them dismissed.
Glenn Sodd, who is representing David Risinger, said of the plans: “Central Texas Railroad is trying to get permission to commence condemning people’s properties, even though they haven’t settled on a route, they don’t have funding, and it hasn’t been approved by the Surface Transportation Board. That puts the landowners in a horrible situation, and we’re going to do what we can to fix it.”
Eminent Domain Requires Approval
In order for TCR to be able to execute eminent domain rights under Texas law, it must have the approval of the Surface Transportation Board. This has the possibility to derail the project depending on how the board views it. It is clear landowners are not in favor of the project, which would allow the railroad company to condemn property as needed. Knowing the challenges it faces, TCR is in a hurry to secure eminent domain rights and acquire property as soon as possible. Their plan is to be in service by late 2021.
Dawson & Sodd, PLLC has been representing landowners against eminent domain claims and condemnation for over 100 years. With some of the most knowledgeable and diligent Texas eminent domain lawyers in the state, they only represent landowners.
If the TCR bullet train project is affecting your property, or you have any other eminent domain worries, contact us today at (903) 872-8181 to schedule a free consultation. We are here to help you fight back!