published Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

Crowd voices opinion on Chattanooga's proposed sound ordinance

  • photo
    Residents who live near Track 29 say loud music from concerts at the site can be oppressive.
    Photo by Doug Strickland /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

  • photo
    Chattanooga City Council plan to allow higher noise limits in certain parts of downtown.
    Illustration by Laura McNutt.

A large crowd gathered tonight to voice their thoughts for the city's proposed sound ordinance that would create an entertainment area where venues with permits could crank up their music until midnight on the weekend.

From business owners to Southside residents, people mainly spoke in favor of the ordinance, but several wanted to see some changes. Some Council members also proposed changes.

Deb Royal, whose spearheaded the complaints against Track 29 and has been working with the city on the ordinance, said she believes the sound levels — at 80 decibel levels and 90 for the bass levels until midnight on the weekend and 11 p.m. on weekdays — is too high and needs to be lowered. But she agreed with the enforcement piece of the law.

Several venue owners, including owners of The Camp House and Flying Squirrel, said they were in favor of the ordinance. Others asked that the permit process not be too expensive for owners to meet.

One of the enforcement tools the ordinance creates is to have bass level limits. It would also create a multiple-step process to acquire a sound permit and a new 3-member board for venues to appeal if their sound permit is revoked or application not accepted.

See tomorrow's Times Free Press for complete details.

about Joy Lukachick Smith...

Joy Lukachick Smith is the city government reporter for the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Since 2009, she's covered crime and court systems in North Georgia and rural Tennessee, landed an exclusive in-prison interview with a former cop convicted of killing his wife, exposed impropriety in an FBI-led, child-sex online sting and exposed corruption in government agencies. Earlier this year, Smith won the Malcolm Law Memorial Award for Investigative Reporting. She also won first place in ...

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