The Map Act is a law passed by the North Carolina General Assembly in the late 1980s to make it less expensive to ultimately purchase future right of way for highways. The law restricted an owner’s rights to freely use their land and resulted in a destruction market value for these unfortunate property owners. NCDOT long recognized this negative impact and used the owner’s dilemma as a way to obtain better prices from desperate owners trapped by the NCDOT. In the Greensboro Outer Loop, the approximately 650 parcels listed in the project in 1996, NCDOT has already purchased more than 85% of the owners. It appears that the hundreds of owners that sold to NCDOT did so without condemnation protections.
The real malignant part of the Act is that it never expired. As a senior NCDOT official explained: “No one want to live in a protected corridor for another 60 years.” Indeed, and it is about time our General Assembly recognized that laws that provide the government an advantage over owners for the governments own benefit are bad laws.