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Boca Raton sued for impropriety in issuing Chabad building permit

The city of Boca Raton is currently being sued by two of its residents for what they allege to be an illegal bending of the city's zoning regulations. The two residents have unsuccessfully filed two different lawsuits against the city since March of last year, with the plaintiffs arguing each time that the city's issuance of a permit for the construction of a synagogue violates its land-use rules.

The residents seem to be specifically concerned about how the increased traffic that the synagogue would bring to this busy area of the city would impact area residents.

The two plaintiffs first filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in February of 2016, but it was dismissed by the following summer. They tried to file again in March of this year to have further work on the project halted, but that lawsuit was also thrown out. Their most recent effort, an appeal filed in June, has yet to be ruled on.

As for the co-defendant, the Chabad of Boca Raton, they note that after two dismissals of the lawsuit, it's time for the plaintiffs to drop their attempt to halt the project.

In terms of the project, city officials first approved the site plans for the project during the summer of 2015. Plans included taking a sliver of land just under an acre along East Palmetto park Road and erecting 18,000 square foot museum and synagogue on the property. The beachfront property's construction was to have cost the Chabad $10 million to build.

The plantiffs in this case, both of which live within a mile of the job site, in each of their lawsuits, argued that the existence of the Chabad in that location would cause a nightmare parking situation for area residents.

Although only two of them filed suit, as many as 100 residents who attended zoning meetings regarding the project voiced similar concerns. And, it's not just these local residents who are concerned. A local real estate investment firm has filed a similar complaint as well. At this point, until both lawsuits are resolved, the project is indefinitely on hold.

If you're concerned that a real estate project permit approved by the city was not issued in accordance with city regulations, then you may benefit from discussing your case with a Melbourne, Florida, real estate litigation attorney.

Source: Sun Sentinel, "Boca Raton asks court to toss third attempt at lawsuit over Chabad synagogue project," Aric Chokey, July 31, 2017

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