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Canadian Pacific Railway Co v Vancouver (City), [2006] 1 SCR 227, 2006 SCC 5 (Link)

Facts:

The Arbutus Corridor ran through Vancouver. It was a railway line but was
abandoned. CP wanted to sell it but there were no buyers, and the land was lying fallow. CP planned to develop the land for residential and commercial purposes. The City of Vancouver enacted a bylaw to keep it as “public thoroughfare”, restricting its use. CPR claimed de facto expropriation.

Issue(s):

Does the bylaw constitute a de facto taking of the land?

Ratio:

A de facto expropriation requires both an acquisition of a beneficial
interest in a property and removal of all reasonable uses of the property.
** A prohibition on all economic activity does not constitute de facto expropriation.

Analysis:

The City of Vancouver does not gain any benefit from the public corridor; possibility that CPR could still use the corridor for rail line or green space, etc.

Holding:

Decision in favour of Vancouver -- no de facto expropriation has occurred.


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