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Phoenix must pay over $220,000 in 'The Zone' homeless encampment lawsuit

Earlier this month, the City of Phoenix cleared the last blocks of what used to be its largest homeless encampment near downtown, known as "The Zone."

It was a race against the clock to comply with a Superior Court judge’s order, which stated that the area created a public nuisance the city is responsible for.

The latest order, signed Sunday, states that the city will foot the bill for the local business and property owners that brought the suit, to the tune of more than $220,000.

The city is also responsible for maintaining public property there. That means keeping the area free of tents, hazardous materials like human waste or drug paraphernalia, and anyone committing crimes like disorderly conduct.

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Kirsten Dorman is a field correspondent at KJZZ. Born and raised in New Jersey, Dorman fell in love with audio storytelling as a freshman at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication in 2019.