City Council Presents Potential Ordinance To Address Noise Level Downtown

Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - by Hollie Webb

Members of the Chattanooga City Council presented a potential ordinance to address concerns about the noise level downtown. If passed, the ordinance will put limits on both dB(A) and dB(C) levels of sound.

It was noted, "When we compare our dB level, it is clear that Chattanooga is lower than Nashville and Knoxville." However, this comparison only takes dB(A) levels into consideration.

It was said during the presentation, "While you can sense or hear the dB(A)s, you're probably going to feel the dB(C)s.

Councilman Jerry Mitchell said, "That is generally the basses that are causing those vibrations...The only way we can regulate those types of annoyances is to use the dB(C) scale."

The ordinance would also require businesses wanting to feature entertainment to acquire a permit, which would have to be renewed annually. A new board, the Board of Controlled Sound Boundaries Permit Appeal, would be created. 

Once a permit is issued, businesses and residences within 300 feet will be notified.

The current codes take the sound measurement at the residential line. However, the new code would take the measurement at the line of property of the business. 

City Attorney Wade Hinton noted that the ordinance does allow for review after a year. At that point, the council would decide if it had worked sufficiently or not.

Many people came to the public hearing in support of the ordinance, including the director of the Camp House, Matt Busby. 

Mr. Busby said, "I'm really in favor of this new ordinance because it will help guide the growth of our city over the next 10 and 20 years."

He said the ordinance would help developers build more appropriately, giving the example of including more sound proofing in the construction of homes located near the defined areas. 

He said, "The way the current ordinance stands, I don't think it's doing anybody any good."

Resident of Jefferson Heights Michael Walker said he supported the ordinance because it would help cut down on police time spent on noise violations. 

He said, "My concern here is safety."

Others asked for the area affected by the ordinance to be expanded to include its businesses on nearby streets, such as Crash Pad and Flying Squirrel. 

Councilwoman Carol Berz said she wanted it to be on the record that "this is for a downtown entertainment district. This is not a prototype for other districts."

It was emphasized, "Areas used for entertainment are the only ones that will be covered by the provisions today." 

Specifically, from Monday to Thursday, the dB(A) level would be 55 from 3 a.m. to 11 a.m. From 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., the dB(A) level limit would be 80 and the dB(C) limit would be 95. From 11 p.m. to 3 a.m., the dB(A) limit would be 65 and the dB(C) limit would be 80.

On Friday to Sunday, the dB(A) level limit would be 55 from 3 a.m. to 11 a.m. From 11 a.m. to 12 a.m., the dB(A) limit would be 80 and the dB(C) limit would be 95. From 12 a.m. to 3 a.m., the dB(A) limit would be 65 and the dB(C) limit would be 80.


Bradley County Republican Party Passes Resolution Opposing Property Tax Line

The Bradley County Republican Party Executive Committee unanimously passed a resolution opposing the efforts by some county commissioners to seek a property tax rate hike. Adam Lewis, BCRP chairman said, “After last fall’s election we were very proud of the fact that 100% of the commissioners were now Republicans. The party was very active in a number of campaigns to help ... (click for more)

TBI Seeking Public's Help In Identifying Body Found In Monroe County Creek

Special agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation are asking for the public’s help in identifying a woman whose body was found in a creek in Monroe County  Wednesday  night. At the request of 10 th  District Attorney General Steve Crump, TBI special agents, in a joint investigation with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department, responded to a report of ... (click for more)

Police Need To Stop The Road Cowboys - And Response (2)

Where is our highway patrol?  If they were known to regularly patrol our interstate highways through our city I don't think it would take long before the "truckers" were aware of it.  There are places in our country where this is the case.   When I have traveled Interstates 24 and 75 I may see the occasional car pulled over but rarely if ever is it an 18-wheeler. ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Never Disturb The Dead

I’ve got too many things in my life that scare me so I’ve always been real leery of “unnecessary fear.” A guy named Terry wanted to teach me how to catch a live rattlesnake one time but had a tough time telling me what exactly to do with the angry serpent when the time came to let it go. I have the same view of these paranormal societies where otherwise sane people go around looking ... (click for more)

Weather Prevails As Ridgeside, Red Bank Ends In A Draw

The Red Bank Gators and the Ridgeside Dolphins were supposed to swim each other for the second time in three days, but the overall winner was the weather man. The meet had not yet reached the midway point when lightning, thunder and heavy rain caused a delay with Ridgeside leading 165-156 following the medley relays. After a discussion with the respective pool reps, coaches ... (click for more)

Chattanooga FC Playing For Division Championship Saturday

The Chattanooga Football Club final home game will be played this Saturday.    With a 4-2 win over the Knoxville Force, Chattanooga controls its own destiny for a 1st place division finish when it faces off against that Nashville FC this Saturday, July 4 at Finley Stadium.  A win secures the division championship for the CFC with a home-field advantage for the ... (click for more)