which provides the greater good: a furniture store, or residents\' homes?
New York Rochelle (CNN)--
City officials in New York\'s New Rochelle are considering taking advantage of the legal powers of the expropriation right to force dozens of residents to sell their homes and property to make way for the following-
Not a bridge, not a highway, not a dam. -
It\'s a furniture store.
IKEA, the national furniture chain, is involved in a city project that officials say will be an economic boon for communities that need improvement.
However, the plan will also include residents of 34 families, employees of 29 businesses and congregation of two churches.
The right of expropriation is the legal power provided to the government, which can force owners to sell their land to the state for the greater good of the community.
It is often used by the government to clean up land for road construction or other public works projects.
But residents said the expropriation was not in line with Ikea\'s proposal.
\"If it\'s something that is really needed in public works, water plants or communities, we\'re going to be completely different,\" said David Newmark . \" His business was threatened by the proposed store building.
\"The community really doesn\'t need furniture shops.
\"The recent community protests against the Ikea proposal showed support for Newmark and other goals of the project.
But so far the mayor is still sticking to the concept.
Obviously, whether it\'s Ikea or other stores, which company will eventually be involved.
\"This is an area that really needs to be renovated,\" said Timothy Idoni, the new mayor of Rochelle . \".
\"The question here is whether Ikea is suitable for it.
\"Idoni and other supporters say Ikea\'s idea could bring hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars in sales tax revenue.
\"Where did I go when I was 77?
What am I going to do?
Dominic gatalito asked that his home had been there since he was two years old, blocking the proposed Ikea store.
Michael McDonald, president of Ikea properties, said: \"We can\'t replace their memories of their home on the spot . \"
\"But we can at least make them feel comfortable and do our best to take care of them from the relocation.
\"But does the local economic benefits of retail stores outweigh the pain and difficulty of owners who have lost their homes, and this question illustrates a bigger question: does the country\'s expropriation law extend to an unreasonable level?
Professor Richard Briffault of Columbia Law School said: \"testing it has always been a public use or a public purpose . \".
\"I think the concept of what is a public use or purpose has become wider.
Gataletto said that the project, both tangible and intangible, would do harm to him.
\"Actually, they want my property to build a furniture store here,\" Gataletto said . \".
\"They want to take my house away, and most importantly, my memory.
Reporter Frank Barkley contributed to the report.