We represent developers, citizens’ groups and municipalities in issues related to the development of real property.

We help property owners and developers apply for and obtain zoning and state approvals needed to develop real estate.

An “Article 78” is a special proceeding to challenge an administrative determination and is often used to seek judicial review of decisions made by towns, villages, zoning board of appeals, planning boards and town boards.

Article 78 proceedings must be brought within a very short period of time, in some cases within 30 days of a decision.

We help developers and citizens’ groups participate in high stakes administrative matters to make it more likely that they will receive a favorable determination and be well positioned to challenge the determination in court if they do not.

Most development projects require administrative approvals that trigger review under the state Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) or the National Environmental Quality Review Act (NEPA). These acts require all potentially significant adverse environmental impacts to be identified, and then mitigated to the maximum extent practicable. Some of the factors that may trigger a thorough environmental review include:

  • Noise,
  • Visual impacts,
  • Traffic,
  • Aesthetic impacts,
  • Threatened or endangered species,
  • Air quality,
  • Parking areas,
  • Natural resources,
  • Historic resources, and
  • Energy use.

If the environmental review process is not done properly, the development approvals may be set aside, governmental funding may be revoked, and projects may suffer lengthy delays.

We guide clients through the environmental review process from start to finish.

We work with other attorneys to provide needed environmental expertise that is outside of their scope of practice.

Sometimes environmental issues arise in real estate or business transactions. We respect existing attorney-client relationships and will provide a limited scope of engagement to attorneys and clients who need environmental expertise on a case-by-case basis.

We help clients obtain environmental permits needed to operate within the bounds of environmental laws and regulations.

Opportunities exist for those who develop properties that have contamination that would “complicate redevelopment of the site.” We help clients evaluate options for tax credits and liability protection in connection with the redevelopment of contaminated properties.

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