Data source
Date of text
16 Jul 2014
Seat of court
Original language


Type of text
National - higher court
Reference number
Court name
First Administrative Court of the Federal Tribunal
flood control, inland water, property right, water resource, water resources management, watercourse

In 2010, the Municipality of Saxon has developed a major water project. This project, providing for the extension of a watercourse, was impacting the applicants’ private properties. The Conseil d’Etat approved the project in 2012.

The applicants challenged before the Federal Tribunal the decision taken by the public authorities to undertake this water project.

According to them, the watercourse planning measures would represent a serious infringement of their right to property.

The Federal Tribunal dismissed the appeal on the basis that the right to property enshrined in Article 26 of the Constitution is not absolute. It may be restricted on a legal basis in the public interest.

In the present case, the Federal Law of 21 June 1991 on Flood Protection and the Federal Law of 24 January 1991 on Water Protection are aimed at protecting watercourses against any environmental harm. As a consequence, the contested decision was issued on a sufficiently precise legal basis.