At the city council meeting this Wednesday, the council will hear a staff report on the issue of outdoor event centers in residential areas.
The topic came up during the planning commission meeting regarding the Sheldon Inn’s application. Commissioners and the public questioned whether the city needed to update the municipal code regarding the existing sound level and if it should be lowered.
City staff has put together a report to present to the city council on June 26, during the meeting that starts at 6 pm. From the staff report:
ANALYSIS: Land Use Outdoor event centers are currently allowed in Agricultural Residential and Very Low-Density Residential zoning districts with the issuance of a CUP. Through the CUP process, staff reviews projects for potential impacts on neighboring uses and may make a recommendation approving a project (with conditions) or denying it. In considering outdoor events centers as a land use,
staff presents the following options:
Option 1: No action This option would not amend current standards or processes and proposed outdoor event centers would continue to require discretionary approval by the Planning Commission. Future submittals would be reviewed on a caseby-case basis for compatibility with surrounding uses and for compliance with the applicable standards of the EGMC, including Noise Control and Zoning.
Option 2: Prohibit in all residential zoning districts Option 2 would require a text amendment to the Zoning Code (EGMC Title 23) to remove outdoor event centers as a conditionally allowed use in Agricultural Residential and Very Low-Density Residential zoning districts, thereby prohibiting such uses. If this option is pursued and adopted, any existing, legally-established outdoor event center would become legal, nonconforming uses. Any resulting legal, nonconforming event center would be limited in their ability to modify or expand operation and, if such use were to be discontinued for more than one year, the legal, nonconforming use could not be re-established.
Option 3: Continue to conditionally allow with no outdoor amplified sound This option would continue to allow outdoor event centers in the current, permitted zoning districts with a CUP but would prohibit outdoor amplified sound (speech and music). Under this option, outdoor, non-amplified sound would be permitted. It is important to note, however, that some non-amplified instruments, such as drums or trumpets, have the potential to generate high dB levels. All applicable noise standards contained in EGMC Chapter 6.32 would continue to be applicable with this option.
Outdoor Amplified Sound The main concern related to the establishment of an ongoing operation of outdoor event centers is their potential to generate excessive noise. In conjunction with concerns heard on recent projects, the Planning Commission discussed whether the City’s current noise standards related to outdoor amplified sound warrants additional analysis
You can read the entire staff report here.
If you would like to comment publicly on the report, you can attend the meeting on Wednesday at the council chambers. The meeting begins at 6 pm. You can fill out a speaker card.
If you are unable to attend and would like to add your input to the council, you can email the council, city manager and the City Clerk to have your comments added to the public record. Simply copy and paste the following emails into your browser.