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Western Land Co. v. Truskolaski

Nevada Supreme Court
495 P.2d 624 (1972)


Facts

In 1941, Western Land Co. (Western) (defendant) subdivided a forty-acre tract of land in Reno, Nevada for residential use. Each lot in the Southland Heights subdivision was subject to a restrictive covenant forbidding use of the property for anything other than single-family homes. At the time, the surrounding area was used primarily for residential and agricultural purposes. Over the years, however, the area around the subdivision grew substantially. The roads bordering the subdivision were expanded and are now main thoroughfares with a great deal of traffic. Substantial commercial development also occurred nearby, with various restaurants and shops opening up. Inside the subdivision, however, traffic remains relatively light. Children can safely play in the area, and homes and yards are well maintained. Around 1968, Western wanted to build a supermarket on a 3.5-acre parcel inside the subdivision. In response, homeowners in the subdivision (plaintiffs) sued to enjoin the development, arguing that it violated the restrictive covenant on the property. Western argued that the character of the area had so substantially changed since 1941 that the restrictions should no longer be enforced. In addition, Western pointed out that the city council had considered rezoning the parcel at issue for commercial use, though it did not do so. The trial court granted the injunction and enforced the restrictions. Western appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Batjer, J.)

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