Smucker v. Lancaster City Planning Comm’n, 74 A.3d 349 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2013).

Facts indicative of "vacant" property under Urban Redevelopment Law.
Case Details:

The City authorized the taking of a property under the Urban Redevelopment Law and began condemnation proceedings.  The Owner appealed and the Commonwealth Court held the property was “vacant” as required by the Urban Redevelopment Law.  As a result, the Commonwealth Court ruled that the condemnation was legal.  The Owner argued that an individual occupied the property and maintained it in lieu of paying rent.  However, the Commonwealth Court determined the property was vacant because the Owner refused to provide the City with a copy of a written lease or any contact information for the alleged occupier, and would not permit the City to inspect the interior of the property.  Moreover, the property was not registered as a rental property as required by the City’s code.

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