The Bullet Train Case from Dallas to Houston: Does Texas Central Have the Power of Eminent Domain?



Dating back to 2015, there have been disputes between the landowner James Miles and Texas Central Railroad and Infrastructure over whether the company can build a 236-mile high-speed rail line between Dallas and Houston. Such a high-speed rail line would run through Miles’ 600-acre property.

Miles argued that Texas Central didn’t qualify to exercise eminent domain under state law as they weren’t officially a railroad company. Citing a section of the Texas Transportation Code, he argued that an organization must have established tracks and current rail services before being called a railroad company.

The argument bought Miles some time as a trial court granted him a summary judgment. However, following a counterclaim by Texas Central, the court of appeals reversed such a decision. They determined that Texas Central was indeed a railroad company and had the authority to use eminent domain, a power granted to government entities to take private property for public use. This authority can be extended to private firms, including telephone, electric, and railroad companies.

To challenge Texas Central’s condemnation claim, James Fredrick Miles has enlisted the help of a Texas eminent domain attorney and is appealing to the state’s supreme court. The help of an experienced eminent domain attorney can drastically change the outcome.

In addition to the possibility of fighting the case altogether or determining that Texas Central was only eligible for taking a portion of Miles’ land, an experienced Texas eminent domain attorney can help Miles receive compensation in the following areas:

  • A fair value for Miles’ property
  • Compensation for damages if only a portion of the property was taken and the taking impacts the rest of the property negatively
  • Expenses for relocation
  • Expenses related to fixtures and improvements to the property

Unfortunately, situations like James Fredrick Miles’ are not uncommon, and many Texas residents face similar situations. That’s why it’s crucial to have an excellent eminent domain attorney on your side. They can help fight the case or get you the compensation you deserve. Contact the best Texas eminent domain attorneys today.

Angela is a senior editor at Dreniq News. She has written for many famous news agencies.