HACKENSACK, N.J. (AP) — A lawsuit that claims New Jersey's two pro football teams are deliberately trying to block a megamall development across the highway from where they play their home games can move forward, a state judge ruled Monday.
State Superior Court Judge Peter Doyne's ruling means the dueling lawsuits over the partially finished building— one by the New York Giants and New York Jets, the other by developer Triple Five — will live on and continue to delay completion of a project that began more than 10 years ago and was originally scheduled to open in 2007.
Canada-based Triple Five sued the Giants and Jets in July, accusing the teams of tortiously interfering with the project and making unrealistic claims about projected traffic problems the mall would cause.
The teams sued Triple Five and the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, which owns the land on which the mall and MetLife Stadium sit, claiming they ignored a 2006 agreement that gave the teams approval power over any modifications to the initial mall design, known as Xanadu.
Doyne denied a motion to dismiss that lawsuit last month.
Xanadu was supposed to open by 2007 but fell victim to the economic downturn. Triple Five, which owns the Mall of America near Minneapolis and the West Edmonton Mall in Alberta, took over the project in 2010 and added an amusement park and waterpark and renamed it American Dream.
The legal battle revolves around whether the teams can prove that the new design will have adverse effects on stadium operations, such as game-day traffic.
Doyne echoed that in his opinion, and added that he has "reservations" about the teams' claims and "even greater reservations" about those made by Triple Five.