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Matthews, Town of v. Department of Transp.

Citation: 12 ELR 20345
No. No. C-C-76-211, 527 F. Supp. 1055/(W.D.N.C., 12/14/1981) Injunction continued

The district court holds that an environmental impact statement (EIS) prepared in connection with the proposed reconstruction and widening of North Carolina Highway 51 violates §§ 102(2)(C)(iii) and 102(2)(E) of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The court rules that defendants failed to give adequate consideration to an alternative that would route traffic around the Town of Matthews. It rejects defendants' contention that the bypass alternative is beyond the scope of the highway improvement project, noting that EISs may not omit analysis of otherwise reasonable alternatives simply because they fail to accomplish all the goals of the original proposal. Because the discusson of alternatives in the EIS is arbitrary and capricious, the court enjoins defendants from any further construction or alteration of the existing highway that would preclude the future construction of a bypass.

Counsel for Plaintiff
Hugh G. Casey Jr.
Casey & Bishop
700 Law Bldg., Charlotte NC 28202
(704) 376-7461

George Daly
Cameron-Brown Bldg., 301 S. McDowell St., Charlotte NC 28204
(704) 335-5196

Counsel for Defendants
James D. Billett, Regional Counsel
U.S. Department of Transportation, 1720 Peachtree Rd. NW, Atlanta GA 30309
(404) 763-7204

James B. Richmond
N.C. Department of Justice
Justice Bldg., Corner Wilmington & Morgan, Raleigh NC 27602
(919) 733-3377