[UPDATE 09/01/2012: Whittington loses in the end @ Austin Contrarian]
Back in 2008, we made a best efforts attempt to wade through quagmire of litigation between Harry Whittington and City of Austin regarding the unlawful condemnation of Harry’s land at 5th and Red River. At the time the City urgently needed the land to build a parking garage to service the convention center. This lawsuit impacted the urban fabric of the entertainment district for the past few years as thousands of feet of retail space has been left vacant.
The Saga of Parking Garage:
The ABJ’s Jacob Dirr reports that Harry has been vindicated in the eyes of the court.
Barring an accepted application for another hearing, Block 38 now reverts back to its original owner, Harry Whittington, while the city must pay him about $3 million in damages and about $700,000 in legal costs, Whittington said.
Is that the fellow that Cheney shot in the face? I’m glad things are looking up for him.
“urgently needed” is really bad spin from the city – I hope you don’t really take it at face value. Most convention center events don’t have a lot of locals visiting – hence little need for parking at the center (rather than at hotels); and frankly, encouraging more out-of-town conventions and fewer local conventions is better for our economy anyways.
This decision by the city was appalling back then, and even more appalling after fighting it for this long – I’m ashamed at how many otherwise good city councilmembers have continued to allow this perpetration of injustice to continue when they had it in their power to stop it.