Orlando, Fla. – January 21, 2021 – GrayRobinson’s Orlando Eminent Domain Team consisting of Kent L. Hipp, Rachael M. Crews, V. Nicholas Dancaescu, and Summer E. DeGel, were featured in the Orlando Sentinel for their recent historic eminent domain case that resulted in a $198 million agreement to acquire a popular shopping complex at Disney World’s front door. The article, “Crossroads Center Near Disney Reaches Historic $198 Million Eminent Domain Settlement with State," outlines the unique strategy by the Eminent Domain Team.
Hipp led the charge on behalf of U.S. Cities, a trillion-dollar Real Estate Investment Trust. U.S. Cities owned the Crossroads Center at Lake Buena Vista, an iconic 37-acre shopping center built by Disney in 1988. Home to 25 major tenants, including restaurants, a mini-golf course, and supermarket, this complex is arguably one of the most valuable properties in Florida. “The four-year case stood out for its complexity,” said Hipp. He explained to the publication that normally in an eminent domain case where a government pays to seize private property for public use, the businesses are forced to leave within a few months. “We came up with the idea that, hey, if we got extra time, where these businesses can operate, that will make things a lot easier to resolve,” Hipp revealed.