National Trust for Historic Preservation v. Blanck

938 F. Supp. 908 (1996)

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National Trust for Historic Preservation v. Blanck

United States District Court for the District of Columbia
938 F. Supp. 908 (1996)

Facts

The National Trust for Historic Preservation (NTHP) (plaintiff) and others filed suit against the United States Army (Army) (defendant) for declaratory and injunctive relief compelling the Army to take extensive measures to restore and preserve historic buildings in the National Park Seminary Historic District located within Walter Reed Army Medical Center. The Historic District was acquired by the Army in 1942 and had been listed in the National Register of Historic Places since 1972, but the buildings within the Historic District suffered significant damage and deterioration in the subsequent decades, caused at least in part by the Army’s failure to maintain them. The Army considered excessing the Historic District in 1979 and 1984 but ultimately opted to retain it because of the cost and duration of the excessing process. In 1991, a decision was made to go ahead with the excess, but that decision was reversed in 1992. The Army did not pursue comments from the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation when it decided to retain the Historic District in 1984. In 1990, the Army commissioned a Section 106 report and other assessments, and a subsequent Cultural Resource Management Plan (CRMP) was approved in 1992. The CRMP included analyses of the history and condition of the buildings, as well as detailed guidance for preservation. Despite the CRMP, several of the Historic District buildings remained in a state of disrepair. The NTHP moved for summary judgment to compel the Army to fund full restoration of the buildings, and the Army also moved for summary judgment.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Friedman, J.)

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