The vacant Crummell School
The vacant Crummell School

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Nearly a month after Ivy City residents celebrated a judge’s ruling that temporarily barred bus parking on the lot of the defunct Crummell School, the city won a small victory today: a stay by the same judge that lifts her earlier injunction for the presidential inauguration on Jan. 21.

The city was hoping to use the space as a parking lot for buses while the upcoming Union Station redevelopment takes place. But Ivy City residents, fearing the health impact of the lot and the hindrance to improving their industrial-feeling neighborhood, sued the city and the Union Station Redevelopment Corporation. On Dec. 10, Superior Court Judge Judith Macaluso sided with the Ivy City residents, placing an injunction on the lot until the city carried out two necessary steps: an environmental study and consultation with the local Advisory Neighborhood Commission.

Four days later, despite Ward 5 Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie‘s pleas to the contrary, the city filed a motion for a stay on the ruling pending appeal. On Dec. 27, Macaluso denied the motion for a stay, so the city filed a supplemental motion for a stay to use the lot during inauguration.

Today, the court held an evidentiary hearing, and Macaluso agreed to lift the injunction from midnight to midnight on Jan. 21. Up to 65 buses can park that day at the Crummell School—-the number the city planned to park there. Otherwise, the city said in a court document, it would have needed to find 10 to 12 city blocks for inauguration bus parking on short notice.

Macaluso did throw Ivy City residents a bone in her decision: The buses won’t be able to idle unless the onsite warming trailers can’t accommodate the bus drivers, in which case one bus may be used to keep them warm—-but it’ll have to direct its exhaust toward a nonresidential street.

Photo by Lydia DePillis