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Cascades Park Noise a Concern for Neighbors

By: Matt Galka; Gina Pitisci Email
By: Matt Galka; Gina Pitisci Email

Tallahassee, FL - The findings of a sound study related to the new cascades park amphitheater and the impact it will have on a nearby neighborhood were presented to the Tallahassee City Commission tonight.

Myers Park resident, Vivian Young is very concerned about potential sound levels from future events that will take place at the new cascade park amphitheater in Tallahassee.

Vivian Young, Myers Park Resident: "they are projected to be extremely loud. One of the studies projected it to being next to your garbage disposal for 4 hours while a concert is going on, so of course we're very concerned about that."

City commissioner, Gil Ziffer says they plan to have up to 12 major concert events at the stage in addition to a lot of other events that will take place there during the year and are looking to work with the residents to come up with a solution that will everyone happy.

Gil Ziffer, Tallahassee City Commissioner, stated, "we're looking at different ways we might be able to mitigate that, we're looking at maybe restricting how late they go, we're looking at how loud we may allow them to go."

Wayne Tedder, with the Tallahassee Leon County Planning Department, gave an update to the city commission identifying the noise levels that would directly impact the residents behind the amphitheater.

Wayne Tedder, Director, Department of PLACE, stated, "essentially there are going to be impacts to the neighborhood, there's upwards of 80 DBA's which is associated with maybe a train 100 feet away from the neighborhood that would result from ticketed events for the park."

The park isn't scheduled to open until September of 2013 and at this point, the city commission is not making any immediate decisions.

In addition to the noise levels, residents were also concerned about the hours of operation of the amphitheater and the traffic that will go through their neighborhood. The goal is to continue the conversation on these issues with the city and county commission within the next 2 weeks.


Tallahassee, FL -- As Cascades Park nears completion, some folks are causing a racket over concerns about the noise that would come from the park's 4,000 person concert amphitheater.

"We're concerned about the noise and the traffic so we're trying to head it off with some guidelines and hopefully we can work with the city to accomplish that," said neighborhood resident Julie Clark.

Clark lives within half a mile from Cascades Park. She says she can already hear noise from FSU games and the fairgrounds. She says that other residents have been very active in voicing their concerns about the looming concert noise to the city.

The city recently oversaw a noise level survey of the area conducted by Michigan firm "Acoustics by Design." They found that levels around the area at midnight were measured from 47 to 51 decibels, but concert levels could get up to 83 decibels, comparable to that of a motorcycle engine.

"Some of the things that we're looking at is determining the hours of operation, the sound levels that would come out here, we actually have a committee that would have representation from the neighborhoods," said Blueprint 2000 director Wayne Tedder. Blueprint is overseeing the project with the city of Tallahassee and Leon County.

Tedder says he wants to limit the impact on neighbors without restricting touring acts that could play at Cascades. It isn't exactly a walk in the park

"We did receive money from our tourism development council to provide economic opportunities and put heads in beds in our community. If you put too many restrictions on this park to deter that, then it's really contradictory for the intent of getting funding for the park," said Tedder.

The idea of a sound wall was proposed to try and keep the noise down, but Tedder says it would cost as much if not more money than the amphitheater itself.


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