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City OKs special district for Raleigh's Glenwood South

Posted November 2, 2014
Updated November 6, 2014

Raleigh pitching eye on Glenwood South
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— The ongoing struggle to balance rest and play in the Glenwood South area came before Raleigh city officials once again – but this time it was for a potential solution residents and business owners agree on.

A public hearing was held Wednesday night for the Glenwood South Hospitality District, a one-year pilot program that provides clarity on outdoor noise levels and fosters more interaction between bar owners and residents to address noise complaints.

The City Council approved the program Wednesday.

Some bar owners say the program allows for a more direct approach to resolving complaints because residents can take their concerns directly to them.

“Basically, having that open line of communication to see if there is a disturbance and to see if there can be a resolution to that disturbance without involving the police,” Dan Lovenheim, who owns Glenwood South businesses Cornerstone Tavern and 606 Lounge, said before the meeting.

City leaders hope the district will help calm tensions between area residents and business owners and avoid long hearings at city hall. In the past, increased police enforcement of noise complaints led bars to seek new outdoor sound permits to keep their doors propped open while music plays inside. Each permit required a city council hearing, which could last for hours as businesses and neighbors squared off.

The area, with its many clubs and bars, is swarmed with partygoers on Friday and Saturday nights. The activity is what, in part, led Del Hopewell to move to the neighborhood.

But the noise does get to him at times.

“As people leave, they’re walking down the street because they park off in the neighborhood areas, and you’ll hear them laughing and talking about their night,” he said prior to Wednesday’s hearing. “When you have to get up at five in the morning, it’s a little disturbing.”

Rules for businesses within the district include:

  • An available manager whenever the business is open or when employees are inside
  • Adhering to noise limits:
    • 60db Sunday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.
    • 55db Sunday through Thursday, 11 p.m. to 7 a.m.
    • 60db Friday and Saturday, 7 a.m. to 2 a.m.
  • No audible sounds from the exterior of any building between 2 a.m. and 7 a.m.
  • Participating in a mediation process for noise complaints within the district
  • Civil penalties for noise violations

The hospitality district’s boundaries include:

  • Glenwood Avenue between Hillsborough and West Peace streets
  • West North Street between North Harrington Street and North Boylan Avenue
  • Tucker Street between North West and St. Mary’s streets
  • West Johnston Street between North West and St. Mary’s Streets
  • Peace Street between North West Street and North Boylan Avenue

Lovenheim, the business owner, believes being grouped into the hospitality district could create a better sense of unity.

“I think it will help foster greater communication between businesses and residents and a greater sense of community in the Glenwood South area,” he said. “That’s the hope.”

25 Comments

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  • Steven Nov 6, 2014

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    Exactly. All the places to live in the district came after the bars and restaurants were already there.

  • Sean Creasy Nov 6, 2014
    user avatar

    After reading this it seems to me that somebody wants to have their cake and eat it too. These are probably the same people that originally promoted all these bars and restaurants to move in so that the value of their property would quadruple. Now that it has they are trying to get rid of the very thing that benefitted them. The ones that moved there recently have NO place to complain at all. They knew what kind of neighborhood they were moving into before they got there and the majority of the apartment/ condos were built AFTER the bars were there. Here is a classic case of dejevue. Wasn't it just a few months ago that the folks around Moore Square were complaining about the same thing?

  • John McCray Nov 3, 2014
    user avatar

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    Perhaps these people lived here prior to the boom in business. Also, the article specifically relates to the stories of people who live in the neighborhood areas, not "the area where people go to get all liquored up."

  • Apex Voice Nov 3, 2014
    user avatar

    Much ado, about nothing.

  • Carol Smith Nov 3, 2014
    user avatar

    If you don't like noise and bar patrons, don't live near businesses and bars.

  • 50s Child Nov 3, 2014

    Did this story have a point, or was it an exercise in how much jargon could be strung together in one article?

    How about just telling us what the new ordinance says?

  • Steve Faulkner Nov 3, 2014
    user avatar

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    I have no idea. The article says residents can take their complaints directly to the source, wouldn't that be the people walking down the street outside?

  • Steve Faulkner Nov 3, 2014
    user avatar

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    And yet, people have done that too. Here and in Greensboro.

  • lewiskr45 Nov 3, 2014

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    People can actually do that and petition the FAA to change an airport's flight patterns. Also, if the city's noise ordinance is being violated, a newer resident in the area has every right to complain.

  • disgusted2010 Nov 3, 2014

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    The troll is alive and well and stirring the pot.

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