Court Holds Nearby Business Lacks Standing to Challenge Zone Change

The Appellate Division held that an assisted care facility did not have standing to challenge a change in definition under local zoning that permitted a competitor to open a facility nearby. In Matter of VTR FV, LLC v Town of Guilderland, the Court held the:

"allegations distill to a claim of 'the threat of increased business competition, which is not an interest protected by the zoning law[]' (Matter of Sun-Brite Car Wash v Board of Zoning & Appeals of Town of N. Hempstead, 69 NY2d at 415). Thus, notwithstanding the proximity of petitioners' property to the phase IV site affected by the amendment to Local Law No. 1, the economic harm they allege is insufficient to confer standing on them (see id. at 409-410, 414)."

In addition, the Court noted there was no allegation of a specific noneconomic environmental harm. As for other claims raised by the Petitioner, the Court found that the change did not constitute spot zoning, nor did it result in a taking.

-Steven M. Silverberg