In 1998, the New York State legislature passed the Hudson River Park Act, which turned over stewardship (but not ownership) of Hudson River Park to the Hudson River Park Trust. In 2013, while Modesto C. was working in the Park, a metal beam collapsed and hit him, causing permanent injuries.
When Modesto later sued, the Court of Claims threw the case out because it thought the Act transferred liability to the Trust.
Modesto appealed to the Appellate Division, First Department, contending that the law didn’t relieve the state of the “nondelegable” liability imposed on property owners. But the AD1 disagreed, explaining that although NYS “technically” owned the property, it could avoid responsibility “if the legislature created an exception to that liability.” Specifically, the AD1 concluded that the state wasn’t liable because it “clearly” was the legislative intent for the Trust to be “the sole entity bearing full responsibility” for any park-related injury.
You can park it right there.
To view a copy of the Appellate Division’s decision, please use this link: C. v. State of NY