This afternoon a Cook County judge rejected a request for a temporary restraining order in a lawsuit filed this week by a condo association seeking to remove a Divvy bike station from outside the condo complex. Streetsblog dug up the complaint. The association says that its procedural rights have been violated because it wasn’t notified of the exact location of the station until construction cones were set up.
But to have a right to be notified of this sort of thing, you need to have some sort of property interest that is being violated. The association says that it has a protected interest for two reasons: (1) “children who come and go from the building, which has no doorman, will be at risk,” and (2) “property values will be diminished as thousands of dollars in recent parkway improvements financed by plaintiff are destroyed by the construction and as units will be less desirable because of public invasion, noise, trash and vulnerability, as well as more congestion and less available parking in an already too congested neighborhood.”
I think that these arguments are frivolous and an attempt to harass the city into moving the station—a technique that apparently worked for a co-op in New York. Emily Badger at Atlantic Cities deemed the lawsuit “insidious.” As far as I know, however, the lawsuit is still ongoing because it doesn’t appear that the complaint has been dismissed. It probably will be in the future, if the city keeps fighting the case (and I hope that it does!).
Steven Vance at Streetsblog has concisely pointed out the absurdity of some of the association’s arguments. For example, it argues that the bikes should be moved to a high-traffic area, away from residential buildings, failing to acknowledge that the condo is in a busy area, and that bikes need to be near people’s home for the bike share to work. Also, the association complains about the loss of parking, even though, as Vance points out, “the station replaced only two parking spaces.”