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Taxpayer Money Used To Build Troy Transit Center On Land City Doesn't Own

TROY (WWJ) - Officials in Troy will be discussing their next course of action after the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled that the city doesn't own land where a new transit center is being built.

The court this week ruled in favor of developer Grand Sakwa Properties, saying the city failed get the project funded within the 10-year deadline set when the developer donated the land for the project.

View a copy of the court's ruling (.pdf format)

According to court documents, Grand Sakwa Properties donated 2.7-acres of the total 77-acres it owns near Maple and Coolidge to the city on the condition that Troy would develop the land for use as a transportation center. Per their agreement, the city of Troy had 10 years from June 22, 2001 to secure funding for the center, which according to the lawsuit never happened.

"The next steps are unclear, because the City of Troy built this transit center on a parcel of land it does not own now and has never owned," Grand/Sakwa Properties spokesman Mort Meisner told The Detroit News.

One option would have the city paying for the property. Another option allows the city to appeal to the Michigan Supreme Court.

The 2,000-square-foot transit center was billed as a hub for new high-speed Amtrak trains. Groundbreaking for the project was held last November.

The transit center was at the center of a recall vote against then-mayor Janice Daniels, who was outspokenly against the project. A special election to fill the mayor's seat is Tuesday.

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