A Connecticut Judge has ruled that the City of Hartford must pay an additional $3 million for property it acquired through eminent domain for development around Dunkin’ Donuts Park two years ago. The City acquired the three parcels in November 2014 for $1.98 million, based on the City’s appraisals. The property owner, Covered Bridge Ventures, appealed the price and a trial was held in February 2016.
“The most astounding shortcoming of both the City’s appraising experts is that neither of them took into account the ballpark …,” the Judge wrote in her ruling, adding that by July 2014 the city had already recognized the significant potential for the entire area in its requests for proposals from potential developers.
In her decision, Epstein also considered two appraisals done for Covered Bridge Ventures. She found an appraisal for $5.22 million to be “much too enthusiastic” for the court to rely upon. In her conclusion, Epstein found the second appraisal, for $4.81 million, to be the fair market value on Dec. 9, 2014, the date the city took the property by eminent domain.