The following is the latest television news coverage from the District’s local networks regarding the Bennett Vaughn vs Union Station Redevelopment Corporation lawsuit.
One of the District’s poorest neighborhoods is fighting City Hall’s proposal to the ground around historic Crummell School into a tour bus parking lot.
Judge Judith Macaluso came to see Ivy City with her own eyes. It’s one of the District’s poorest neighborhoods fighting City Hall’s turning the ground around historic Crummell School into a tour bus parking lot.
“They always did what they wanted to do to Ivy City and I hope they put a stop to it,” says Brenda Ingram-Best. The city already parks hundreds of school buses here, plus other city vehicles. Residents complain they’ll now have fumes from tour buses. “I have siblings who have respiratory problems,” says Stephen Scarborough. “I’m totally against the idea.” “My daughter is asthmatic. Literally yesterday she had dark circles under her eyes,” says Peta Gay Lewis.
Judge Macaluso would not answer questions. “It’s not a press conference,” she says. “This is just a viewing so I can understand the content in the courtroom.”
Activists have taken up the cause. “They went ahead and started construction,” says Parisa Norouzi. What if the city loses in court? “Let’s see what happens,” says Mayor Gray. “It’s pending at this stage. I don’t think it’s appropriate for me to comment on it until this has been settled.”
Judge Macaluso will hear the case again in her courtroom Thursday.
A DC Superior Court judge left the bench to take a tour of Ivy City as residents near the historic Crummell School are fighting the bus depot lot being built.
A D.C. Superior Court judge visited the northeast D.C. neighborhood where residents are fighting the building of a bus depot near the an historic school.
The Alexander Crummell School near Okie and Kendall streets, built in 1911 and abandoned in 1980, is on the register of historic places, but its expansive yard off New York Avenue is being paved over for the District to use as a tour bus parking lot beginning in March.
Neighbors — some who went to the school — want a job center and community place for the mostly poor and struggling Ivy City neighborhood. They’ve gone to court to block the parking project.
“We were to get the building ready for the neighborhood,” said 82-year-old Remetter Freeman, who graduated from the school in 1941 and helped get it on the historic register. “We wanted to put in job training, lots of things. For the kids, a library.”
“There’s a lot of people around here that are sick and have respiratory problems,” former student Jeannette Carter said. “Then there’re the little kids. They don’t have nowhere to play but in the street. And when I was going to school, we used to have fun right there in the evenings and stuff, all kinds of programs and things we had to do.”
D.C. Superior Court Judge Judith Macaluso took a walking tour of the area to see what neighbors are complaining about. The suit in part alleges the city failed to follow city laws and the heavy bus exhaust is unsafe.
“The city government hasn’t done anything by way of surveys, assessing the problem in the community,” lawyer Johnny Barnes said. “People have lived here forever, and they’ve just been dumping on them because they’re low income and they haven’t voted in the past.”
Neighbors and activists say there’s already too much industrial use in a neighborhood where about 1,200 people struggle to live every day.
DC Judge Oversees Temporary Bus Depot Lawsuit Visits Ivy City
WASHINGTON -A D.C. Superior Court judge left her courtroom on Monday to get a good look at an issue that has many D.C. residents upset.
Judge Judith Macaluso toured the Ivy City section of Northeast D.C. It involves a case concerning a temporary bus depot that is being built in Ivy City. Members of the community have filed a lawsuit asking Judge Macaluso put a stop to it.
Residents believe the pollution created by the buses parked in the bus lot will cause health problems for those living nearby.
The temporary lot will store as many as 65 buses, which are typically used to travel the New York-D.C. route. The lot will be used until bus storage is created once Union Station undergoes a multi-billion dollar renovation.
When the temporary lot is complete, passengers will be picked up and dropped off at Union Station. The buses will then head to the temporary lot to be parked and give drivers time to rest.