Representative Matters

  • We represent and advise the owner and developer of a 188-acre property in Staten Island, New York, which is among the largest privately-owned, undeveloped parcels in New York City. Part of the property is a former major oil storage facility and is the subject of a consent order governing the site’s remediation and the preservation of wetlands on the site. We advise on matters relating to the environmental impact review of potential development proposals, construction of road transportation corridors and facilities, wetlands permitting and compliance, and management of materials under beneficial use determinations. We also assist in communications and negotiations with private stakeholders and state and federal governmental authorities.
  • B&D serves as California and nationwide environmental counsel for a large real estate investment trust that has numerous portfolios of specialized property. The environmental engagements run from investment related environmental investigations and environmental matters for owned properties, to work-out risk management and allocation matters. The work includes interacting with regulatory agencies and technical consultants, drafting of purchase and sale agreements and specialized municipal agreements, and negotiating insurance contracts.

  • B&D served as environmental counsel for the owner of the largest urban infill Brownfield project in California and one of the largest in the U.S. The 240-acre site in downtown Sacramento, which was contaminated by 130 years of railroad operations, is zoned for up to 11,000 residential units as well as commercial uses. B&D negotiated a complex site-remediation agreement with the former owner, a host of regulatory agencies, and other stakeholders, including the then future owner and developer of the property to clean up, sell, and develop the property. The negotiations covered scores of separate agreements with private and government entities, including purchase and sale agreements, easements, and settlement agreements and public funding agreements, regulatory documents, and access agreements.
  • On behalf of the City of Oakland, we sued the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) to void a property transfer from the Oakland Army Base to Caltrans that threatened to isolate Oakland’s planned development of the former Base property. When the Base was decommissioned, the City of Oakland and the Port of Oakland negotiated with the Department of Defense to take over the property for port expansion and commercial redevelopment. Under an obscure provision of federal law that permits FHWA to transfer abandoned federal property to state transportation agencies, FHWA deeded strips of land on the perimeter of the Base underlying a freeway to Caltrans. Caltrans claimed to require title to the property to provide security for the elevated freeway structures. The parcels Caltrans acquired, however, blocked access to the Base property from Oakland. We filed parallel suits in state and federal court challenging the propriety of the transfers for failure to follow the statutory transfer process and for ignoring the requirements for environmental reviews. After extended negotiations, we successfully settled the cases by obtaining permanent easements across the Caltrans parcels, assuring access.