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Judge Lifts Order Keeping Families From Moving Into Crown Heights Shelter

 A new homeless shelter planned at 267 Rogers Ave. in Crown Heights will temporarily house 132 families, the city has said.
A new homeless shelter planned at 267 Rogers Ave. in Crown Heights will temporarily house 132 families, the city has said.
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DNAinfo/Rachel Holliday Smith

DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN — A Brooklyn judge on Monday lifted an order stopping homeless families from moving into a new Crown Heights shelter.

Brooklyn Supreme Court judge Katherine Levine said plaintiffs who had filed a lawsuit against the city over the 132-family shelter at 267 Rogers Ave. failed to show the facility would cause irreparable harm to the neighborhood.

Her ruling at a heated court hearing Monday afternoon will allow families to move into the controversial shelter effective immediately.

Previously, residents’ lawsuit and a subsequent temporary restraining order had halted move-ins a day after the first 10 families moved to the facility, one of 90 planned to open under Mayor Bill de Blasio’s overhaul of the Department of Homeless Services.

The facility is one of two in Crown Heights that faced significant backlash and a lawsuit after the city announced their openings. The other, a men’s shelter on Bergen Street, recently opened after a two-month delay due to a court battle.

The controversy negatively affected the residents that had already moved to the Rogers Avenue site, an attorney said in court on Monday. He stated that two families with histories of domestic violence chose to move out of the facility because they worried the publicity from the case would endanger them. They have since moved to other DHS shelters, the attorney noted.

DHS spokesman Isaac McGinn said Monday's ruling is “another positive step forward in our citywide effort to turn the tide on homelessness."

"We are proceeding with moving additional families into 267 Rogers so that they have the same opportunity to stabilize their lives as the families already residing at this location," he said in a statement.

The Rogers Avenue facility is the last of five new shelters currently planned by the de Blasio administration. The other 85 shelter locations — planned by the city to replace all cluster and hotel shelters in the city — have not yet been announced.