Restaurants rising: Up in arms over Tolbert's noise law

news-belmont-streetscapeThe view from Bel Rio, home to much of the commotion.

Charlottesville restaurants–- already hammered by chilly wintertime sales, zealous alcohol rules, and a nine-percent tax on all they sell–- have decided to rise up to fight the latest thing threatening their livelihood: a proposed noise ordinance that would limit nighttime restaurant noise to just 55 decibels, a sound level lower than a typical conversation.

"I really think we're being steam-rolled here," says Alan Katz, the music director for Coupe DeVille's and one of several speakers at City Council Tuesday night.

An Elliewood Avenue restaurant that features live music six nights a week, "Coupes" (as it's known to regulars) would, Katz said, be irreparably harmed by such an ordinance. "We need a break," Katz told the Council.

But according to some residents in the south-of-downtown area called Belmont, it's their neighborhood–- and their sleep–- which have recently begun suffering.

"There's a time and a place for everything," said Belmont resident Allison Ruffner, the lone speaker favoring the ordinance. "I don't think an area like this, a mixed-use district, is the place to explore how loud we can have music between eleven o'clock at night and two o'clock in the morning."

hotseat-tolbert-0725Jim Tolbert

According to How Stuff Works, the decibel level of a typical conversation is 60 decibels, and Jim Baldi, the owner of Bel Rio restaurant, said that a man with a decibel meter found that merely opening the door to the City Council chambers registered 62 decibels.

"My vent hood makes more noise than that," said Wes Wright, owner of Belmont Barbecue, which doesn't "have a dog in that fight" because he closes at 8pm, but noted that someone called the police around 7pm one night when there was an acoustic duo on the patio at nearby La Taza. "I'm asking you to be realistic," said Wright.

Opponents of the ordinance suggest that the City already went too far when, in 2008, it created a citywide ban on over-75 decibel noise. By the following summer, several City Councilors were wringing their hands in frustration when they realized that they'd inadvertently banned African drumming on the Downtown Mall.

The problem for such places as the Corner–- and particularly downtown Belmont, which has witnessed a renaissance in the past decade–- is that some residents of the surrounding houses claim to have moved in before the hijinx began.

And what hijinx. On a letter bearing the names of 15 Belmontians, resident Kimber Hawkey recently sent city officials photographs of women at Bel Rio adorned only in panties and pasties.

news-belrioburlesqueScenes from a Christmas show at Bel Rio restaurant that outraged some Belmontians.

So Charlottesville finally gets a strip club? Well, according to those who viewed the show, curvaceous females were evident, but the Christmas night performance–- orchestrated by musician Christian Breeden–- was built more on satire than titillation.

"I can see how the saber-rattlers might call that something immoral," says Breeden. "But those girls, in my humble opinion, are artists."

The girls are members of a Richmond troupe called "Varietease," which joined Breeden, whose band The Dirty Horse has the regular Thursday night gig at Bel Rio, on December 25.

"That was just a brainstorm," says Breeden, "to do something special because so few places were open."

Back at the ordinance hearing, audio engineer/musician Jamal Millner noted that he was speaking at at least 55 decibels, and longtime musician Bennie Dodd noted that freight trains pass by when he plays at Coupes. "Now, that's some serious noise," said Dodd.

Sound company owner Jerry Mallory pointed out that his typical measurements of conversations run 61-79 decibels and that his own speech to Council hit 70. After asking the assembled crowd to fall silent, he said the silence actually measured 55.

Nonetheless, Councilor Kristin Szakos urged a 55-decibel limit, but Councilor David Brown moved to change  the limit at 60 decibels, limiting the ban to amplified music, and restricting the ordinance to the Belmont and Fry's Spring neighborhoods.

All four present Councilors (Mayor Dave Norris was absent until shortly after the discussion) voted to move the ordinance forward. It will get a final vote at an upcoming Council meeting.

In other actions at the February 16 meeting, Council discussed creating a new "neighborhood advocate" position, agreed to purchase and then lease for 40 years a property on Fourth Street as a homeless shelter, agreed to put out an RFP for getting a study on raising the Ragged Mountain Dam, urged the state not to adjust its school funding formula, and named Assistant City Manager Maurice Jones Acting City Manager effective April 13.

Read more on: belmontnoise ordinance


boo! you get a silver star. After midnight, not only does hearing adjust to less ' bustle' but the atmospheric density changes. Air is less dense, and sounds travel a long way. You need make far less noise to be heard very effectivly and well.

All of these musicians and patrons who want loud music don't think its loud because they have damaged their hearing and desensitized themselves.

What it comes down to is a few late arrivals want to do what they want to do in someone else's backyard, without making any adjustments themselves. They think they ahve a right to force their own lifestyle - and it's a lifestyle because none of them make their livings this way - onto somebody else. They think the whole town belongs to them.

It doesn't.

this goes out to cc.i resent the fact that you refer to musicians as whiny girls.i have been working professionally since 1976 in c-ville and i feel that this is a classic case of once again,too much govt.what the big problem for me lies with this pitiful ordinance,it will spread to the whole city.lots of folks will lose work.i am simpathetic to residents,but i dont think i & lots of others should lose work & suffer from this.please pay attention & think before you start talking about people who you have no connection & knowledge about,cause theres alot people & large music scene & you will disrepect alot of may not care,but we are trying to make aliving like everyone else.the only thing that be done is vote these people out of office.its been done in va,jersey & mass,and it can be done in the city of c-ville.

@Caesonia-Give it a rest. Go take a walk in the woods or get a massage.

@Christian-Thank you for being the only nonanony here. I like your music. Personally, I would be sorry to see Bel Rio shuttered even though I've never been there. While I understand the desire by nearby residents not to live in a 24/7 party zone, my impression is that this area is not the pristine residential neighborhood that some of the posters here make it out to be. I drive past Mas and Bel Rio quite frequently in the late evening, and there is usually a lot of activity there, both in terms of traffic, lights, and noise from not just Bel Rio but Mas and The Local. This has been the case for several years. Even before the restaurants moved in, there were other businesses, which generated their own noise and traffic. I'm sure the yuppies who bought the old houses in the neighborhood were well aware that they weren't buying into a Glenmore type situation. As you point out, Christian, for better or worse time and space will ultimately force change in mixed use areas such as Belmont. Seems like some compromise could be reached so that the neighborhood can have its music and the neighbors can still have their sleep.

I think you're right, Old Timer.

After all is said (and not much done), the simple fact is that if Bel Rio creates less noise, the controversy will all but disappear.

Whether this capitulation means that the forces of tyranny have won (as some seem to be saying) or the forces of civility, consideration and reason (as others are postulating), it IS the solution. And it certainly appears that it will happen, whether through ordinance or common sense.

So the ordinance is unenforceable? The point is once it's passed the cops will be called MORE often, not less often, if the sound level isn't reduced. Let's surmise that the ordinance does not pass. Then the people that wanted it will call the police MORE often, not less often, if the sound level isn't reduced.

It seems to me that there is an irresistible force behind those that want less noise in Belmont. The question is whether or not Bel Rio and the acts that play there believe that they are an immovable object.

I would imagine that the owners of Bel Rio want to have good relations with their neighbors, the city and the CPD. Whatever value the notions of artistry and culture are ascribed to loud music after 11pm probably weigh less in the minds of these businessmen than the ire of these entities.

The shame is it's a great room. That does not mean that it should therefore be used at these hours.

"Do as you want to as long as it doesn’t bother others."

Unfortunately this is no longer the norm. The new phrase is 'Do as you want and the hell with everyone else.'
To them it is their world and we are just passing through.

No, I'm not part of the problem. I don't live in the neighborhood, nor do I frequent Bel Rio or play music. I have read the comments to this story with interest and appreciate all perspectives, but your posts--full of insults and anger--are becoming tiresome and obnoxious. They are not convincing anyone of anything. You sound like a 50 year old child who needs something truly important to worry about.

Pound Foolish,

That you are and more. Let me assure you there is nothing straw about either of the houses I have/had in Belmont, and I still don't have grannit counters either. I do have solid 3 inch thick plaster walls backed with heavy pine lathe so healthy that when I cut a plumbing access I was hit with the smell of fresh hard cured heart pine, the likes of which you can..not..find in any house made today. The same for plaster, and you can count on your frame beams being the actual 6X6 they are supposed to be, not the pre-milled set.

Yes, many of those homes needed substantial investments and renovations to make them healthy, and update them. Many of them had had shoddy repairs done on them before by the slum lords that used to own them, and these has to be redone as well. Yet many of them got what several homes now over in the Yorktown area need, because of their own age. For example, galvanized steel rusts up whether its in a Belmont home, or a Greenbrier home. I did all those things and it has all passed your supposed 5 year lipstick test.

I watched several homes get ' flipped' as you say, and so far, the complete overhauls those houses got have held up very well also.

Believe me, I have seen the quality of construction in places like 4 seasons and Mill Creek, and I would not trade places. If I recall it was Mill Creek that had special downsized furniture made to make people believe the small rooms were bigger than they were.

Really it doesn't matter though, if its Mill Creek or it's Belmont. The physical attributes are different, and the taste, but the purpose - residential living- is the same. Belmont was very quiet when most of us moved in, and a single restaurant acting as a nightclub does not have the right to upend the apple cart.

You just sound very jealous to me, and resentful over the fact that you can't bring your frat party into someone else's backyard. You have a backyard of your own. Set it up and use it.

molokoultra - So what if Bel Rio did more than Traxx. If I do more than most to keep my junkyard filtered is it OK if I pollute your well water?

Can I call you an intolerant whiner yuppie snob if you don't want to drink your well water anymore because I contaminated it?

Maybe I'll just tell you to move away if you don't like it even if you were there long before I was. The area is changing and I put in some filters so that be enough to satisfy you.

Let me tell you and the other condescending self-entitled 'musicians/music lovers' something. I worked in industrial applications all my life and what I have read so far about this place is a joke. Bel Rio and it's musicians want to profit off of noise pollution then they darn well can pay whatever it costs to mitigate that noise pollution.

Don't want to spend the money? Turn the volume down. Simple. End of Story.

Or you move to one of the vacant commercial spaces available all over the city not close to residential housing. I can think of several palces off the top of my head.

Pound Foolish -

"or your 6Ã?â??6 construction ain’t as grand as you profess."

I never made that statement. Allison Ruffner did. So you obviously aren't reading what people are saying. What a surprise.

You also continue to be in denial over sound characteristics.

"There is not an a/c unit out there that doesn’t generate ATLEAST 55db."

Prove it. Give us some evidence on youtube. I want you to show everybody and you need to measure it at the property line, as the ordinance says.

Does that ordinance apply to the idiot boom box automobiles that cruise the city streets and parking lots with their ear spliting BOOM CHIKA CHIKA BOOM ?

Try sitting next to one of them at a traffic red light !

At least you're not a black person living in "Random Row" in the 60s. I'm reading the history of that neighborhood. It seems like the city changed it for the sake of commerce in much more drastic ways.

"Vinegar Hill was largely demolished in the mid-1960's as a part of Charlottesville's "urban renewal" campaign. The political forces within the city saw a derelict slum that had developed on the hillside immediately adjoining the downtown district. At the same time, peripheral areas beyond downtown had begun to draw commerce away from the central district and some form of revitalization was seen as necessary to staunch the flow. In addition, there was no smooth north-south connection through the downtown area of Charlottesville, and ease of automobile and bus transportation was seen as a high priority, especially for the Greyhound franchise which stood at the top of Vinegar Hill on Main Street. All of these factors combined with available federal money and a very thinly disguised racist agenda of slum clearing in an area so close to the reputable downtown business district to produce the nearly wholesale destruction of a neighborhood that was uncommonly rich in its own heritage, traditions and lore within Charlottesville."

the rest is here:

Christain - Stop trying to make yourself sound more innocent and less selfishly ignorant than you are about the situation. I read a thinly veiled contempt for those that disagree with you in Belmont in your back-handed compliments.

"I’m sorry for calling it a ââ?¬Å?drainage ditch for the growing population’s urge to party” If I’d have called it the crown jewel in this town’s newest bar crawl destination I think the effect on those opposed to Hinton as a place to party would be the same."

A perfect example. You aren't remotely sorry and you still feel entirely justified in what you said and are doing because you think you are the scene and cool.Ask you band buddy Andrew why he rezoned and moved if it was all OK in OZ.

What was done in Vinegar Hill was wrong. The unhappy residents had nothing to do it. You however have a lot to do with the loud late night music scene that keeps them up and will damage thier neighborhood. The object of the ordinance is to require that you and your friends keep it down there, or go somewhere else.

"But if you come into my neighborhood"

"my" neighborhood?

that sums up your attitude.

If the bass causes your floor to shake it is a lot louder than 75 db. or your 6x6 construction ain't as grand as you profess.

There is not an a/c unit out there that doesn't generate ATLEAST 55db.

I live very close to Bel Rio & I go there quite often. As long as the the doors are closed you can barely hear anything coming from the venue no matter who's playing there. You can stand outside & have a normal conversation with someone & not even notice the music. This whole argument is a bunch of BS. If I lived next door to the Jefferson & it made a lot of noise I'm sure nothing would be done. This town has done nothing but squash venues over the past 10 years & it's a freakin' shame. If your music doesn't fall within certain genres you don't get to play in Cville. There were a few places with great sound & offered a variety of music but the elitist "supporters" of local music didn't support them & now they're gone. Hope you're happy with 99% crap music left in this hick town!


Hi molokoultra. I want to make a more thoughtful reply to Christian as he has devoted a lot of time to the issue but I want to make a short one for you.

Using the Jefferson is a bad example for your cause, because it was designed to keep the sound in. It is also not allowed to make as much as it wants as late as it wants. Currently, I am not hearing any sound outside the Jefferson when they play, and that's the point isn't it?

Bel Rio with it's doors closed isn't as bad as when open. But they do open their doors while playing don't they? And it shoots back down the street.

Whatever you think or don't think about what passes as cool music I'll keep it simple. If its too loud and keeping people awake at night, its a problem. People aren't closing down a particular music type, they are closing down a music volume with it's associated ills, in a place where people sleep at night.

Pound Foolish. *deep breath* Okay, for the last flippin' time-- nobody is complaining about people playing a radio on a summer afternoon with their window open, a neighbor making a couple of batches of Pina Coladas with a blender, or a loud truck driving by. They're talking-- *very specifically*-- about loud music, several times a week, every week, for 3 straight hours from 11pm to 2am. 2am is late for people who have to get up at 6 or 7am to go to work. WORK.

Seriously, WHY aren't you getting that part? Do you have profound problems with reading comprehension? Why are there so many idiotic arguments popping up on this issue along the lines of "Ooooh, I guess the people in Belmont will call the police if someone sneezes too loudly!"

The precise issue has been explained ad nauseum, and people like you are STILL bleating on about blenders, Vinegar Hill, and whether you think the Belmont houses meet your standards of attractiveness. WTF?

Christian said: "These pictures are of a brief moment that is the climax of intricate dance with themes and costumes."

I'm not one of those moral finger pointing people, so this isn't a criticism of nudity or morals and the like. But I just wanted to say............bwwwahahahahaha! to the above quoted comment. You're trying too hard to make it out to be waaaay more than it probably was. "intricate dance," that just cracks me up. :D "Themes and costumes." Uh yeah, if you consider pasties and panties and bad wigs and makeup to be "costumes." bwwwahahahahahaha! Seriously, that made me chuckle out loud.

Because of things like this, this town is gay and will always be gay. Period.

"belmont sucks regardless": Belmont doesn't suck, just some of the people.(so please don't honk your horn on hinton)

"Caseonia" said: "No, I am not angry. I am just sick of a bunch of people who think that they have a right to force their lifestyle on someone else" THEY PROBABLY SAY THE SAME THING ABOUT YOUR INABILITY TO SLEEP WITH MUSIC IN THE BACKGROUND.

cc: I reread the plow thread and I kinda think you did get "spanked"

So we're back to the lies about how nightclubs saved Belmont. That's a lot like the lies about how Lee Danielson saved the downtown mall. Anyone that thinks no one lived or wanted to live in Belmont 20 years ago wasn't around then or had his head up his [somewhere sunlight doesn't reach is maybe acceptable to big brother?]

20 years ago at least half the people I knew lived in Belmont, and they were a diverse lot. Some of the less wealthy of that group were pushed out as property values rose. As that happened, I met more people who for various reasons had a desire to buy and fix up an older house. Some of them bought houses that had been divided or rented to groups of 4 or 5 renters. I know of several houses that went from being occupied by 5 people to being renovated and occupied by a single couple. It would surprise me to find that the actual population has declined in some parts of the neighborhood.

None of the people I knew who were moving into Belmont 10-15 years ago were doing it because of nightlife. Mostly it was because Belmont was a quiet place to live or raise a family without the sterility of Hollymead or similar places in the suburban ring. It was a place people believed they could build something good for the future.

It's really sad to see new people coming along who have so little respect for the people who really did the work of making Belmont and Charlottesville a great place to live. The attitude of "you've built it, now I want it, SO LEAVE if you don't like my noise" is a pathetic commentary on what our society has become.

Silent stripping? My new business venture!

Yes I do feel justified. I think I have the right to find places to play and to try and make it work when possible. I've spent enough of the last decade dedicated to this persuit to have earned my stripes. The time and energy involved could have been dedicated to fully remodeling several fine old homes and then I'd surely be fighting to keep my property values up and my space serene. I empathise, even if I don't do it well. Once again I must commend the voices who obviously disagree, but do it with a calm tone and tact. They have me seriously considering changing my tune and advocating some drastic shift in my original argument.

As far as the house at 814, I don't remember ever being able to hear Bel Rio's music from up the street. Sound is funny that way. the coffee shop along that side deadens noise. it's a few hundred yards away. I think the homes impacted are right next to the downhill side. Yes, Andrew moved. Having spent the night there a few times I know that Fitzgerrald's air compressor sounded like it was in the house and the impact drivers were like jackhammer's rattling the walls. It was impossible to get any sleep after 7am!!! oh the irony.

I know where Vinegar Hill is and was. It seems pertinent in a discussion about a changing neighborhood. It's an example of a worst case scenario. When I talk about the changes occurring, I try to think outside of my obvious biases. If vinegar hill hadn't been demolished, I think that it would have become the natural "it" destination. Dingy clubs and nightspots and soulfood canteens would have been all piled up with lower income housing. Funky little buildings would have been Bought up and renovated. Art galleries and dens of ill repute would draw people in to fight for parking spaces. Belmont would likely still just house the little general stores and auto shops. That didn't happen. The downtown mall is simply not enough. I think there is a demand for a larger village center. I'm not going to try to define Hinton Ave ten years down the road. I think that changing it's current direction would require the energy to be redirected in another direction. That strip over by Wrights is starting to hop. Perhaps I should set up a stage in the junkyard and try to draw the night terrors on down the line?

Hey there music man.

The ordinance is only getting traction because some of your colleagues are not using good sense.

You don't play loud music in a venue a house away from a non-student residential area after 9 at night much less 11PM. It has nothing to do with the livelihood of musicians, or people being curmudgeons. You just don't do that.

If the ordinance is now being viewed city wide that should be a warning flare to you and your musical colleagues that there is a large untapped audience you are not only missing out on but irritating. They might not want or be able to listen to you at night, but would do so in the afternoon. Some of them might start going to listen to the quiet personal ballad acts.

To respond to their frustration over lost sleep with the derogatory references about being old fogies, or dead, or that the very neighborhood you so desperately wish to play loud music in is a 'drainage ditch' is the epitome of stupidity. Insulting people is a good way to make enemies, and they will punish all the music community for it.

Now that's exactly what's happening isn't it? They will eventually win because other neighborhoods are getting worried and they call in for a similar ordinance.

Maybe you should have taken a leadership role before it got to this point. I strongly recommend you two things.

Shut up the ones like Christian with his steady stream of belittling commentary.

Get Bel Rio to turn it down. Watch the late night volume in other places similarly situated.

Like I said. It's simple.

@Pound Foolish,

So far those opposing the ordiance in the district are those who fail to make any sort of rational argument, and ignore unpleasant facts onconvenient to their case. They then choose to belittle and run down the homes these people have renovated or make personal references to their lives as if that somehow gives them credibility.

You are no exception.

The residents do gather evidence, which is what scared a lot of people this last time around. That includes the evidence of a striptease function which no amount of excuses can be justified if someone is claiming to run a restaurant.

Fans are white noise. So are ACs. Bass music from bands is not nor are crashing cymbals. Why even some of the frustrated residents were told to buy fans to stop the noise. People also don't run blenders at midnight when they are trying to sleep. This is just another non-sequitor from a jealous wannabee.

I agree the over all real estate market has impacted housing prices, including Belmont. The point was that it is a blatant lie to claim Belmont was saved or made by a couple of night clubs in the last 2 years. I haven't heard of any foreclosures on those 'over-priced' Belmont properties though, unlike in suburbia and other places in the City. Sounds like Belmont residents are pretty good about how they handle their bills and what they bought. I mean hey, some of them who are unhappy with the sound have lived there 40 years.

I think your term reasonable is what those on the " I want to play when and were I want as loud as I want," falls down. If they were being reasonable, there wouldn't be a conflict.

Ya know the powers that be should never have given the restaurants bars, strip club, burlesque hall ,gin mills a licence in the first place . They knew what was going to be happening in these places.They got all the fees and what freebies they could now they want to take the baseball and go home . Close the city counsel not the business'

Please don't call 911. We don't need a 9 month old baby and her 2 year sister in the media nationwide because some local rookie threw handcuffs on them! :)

Rob said: "....Charlottesville will allows be a 2nd rate town and never be a true city."

Seriously, what is it with the typos and misspellings and flagrantly wrong word choices that proliferate in the comments section here at The Hook? Charlottesville "will allows be" ?? What? What is that sentence even saying anyway??

oh so sorry boo! *ALWAYS* what an editor you are, The Hook is so lucky to have you.

Is this one giant retirement community? Teenagers have nothing to do in Charlottesville, now some old farts want to dictate how loudly you can talk in a restaraunt? The TOWN of Charlottesville needs some leadership to help move it forward not hold it back. This is not 1810, this TOWN needs an Olive Garden, a Hooters, a safe and security tight place for teens to go and hang out, a strip club not so much but we are allowing the old money and old people of this TOWN to hold us back. Change isn't always easy and moving forward to better where you live can be a challenge but it's needed. The people who don't like change and don't like to see things progress, there's a place for you. It's called Boca. Hope on 95 south and enjoy your pruins.

Pound foolish,

-->I also understand that if it is 74 dbs OUTSIDE her house it will be less than 65 inside the house and probably damn near 55db in the bedroom.

No, you don't understand that at all. You just made that up because it's what you want to believe. Most people's bedrooms are outside walls not the center of the house and it would depend on where the room faces. If the bedroom faces the 75 dbs of sound, it will be close to 75 dbs if the window is open and the lot is small. Depending the actual insulation and window construction close to 65 dbs. That's more than normal conversation right in your bedroom. A quiet room is measured at 40dbs and a whisper at 30db. I can hear whispers in the library just fine.

55dbs is an accepted standard for residential areas and has been for a long time. That means by the time you get into the house you will be much closer to 45dbs, given the same design. People can pretty consistently sleep in that.

You also don't know where the fan for her heat is if she even has a forced air method. Maybe she has baseboard or steam heat. I know that the ducts in my house do not pump out 60dbs of noise.

The big difference between older homes and modern ones are the quality of insulation and yes, sound deadening materials. People now accept the dangers of noise and houses are better sound proofed. When Belmont was built they didn't have the trouble of diesel trucks and amplified base tones. It doesn't mean they weren't well built and in many cases built better than something today it just means they don't have the ability to withstand certain modern sound demands.

-->Since I cannot go into anybodies bedroom to make a youtube video of the noise and comparisons the onus is not on me.

You could have fooled me from all the claims you have made about one poster's home you have never been into. I thought you understood exactly what her house was built like in whatever neighborhood she lives in. I am waiting for you to tell me exactly how my house is built and the measured sound in my bedroom too.

"when homeowners are forced into public housing through eminent domain,"

No "homeowners" were forced into public housing... homeowners were paid for their properties. The renters were lucky to get public housing, it is not a god nor constitutionally given right.

If the city had wanted to emminent domain that firebox on avon and paid fair market value I wouldn't care except that it would have been a horrible waste of taxpayer money.

If you drive through Belmont you still see a lot of dumpy properties so say what you will about Mill Creek, but Belmont ain't beverly hills. Also, there are some tiny tiny bedrooms in belmont houses that even smaller furniture couldn't hide.

As far as the noise situation goes, suppose you have a neighbor who plays their stereo or even tv with the window open in the summer... their volume will most certainly be above 55db at the property line.
The houses are often 8 feet apart.
Are we gonna bust them too?

You claim Bel rio is being unreasonable because if they were reasonable they would simply do as you say.

Well there are those who think that if you have 6x6 construction and three inches of plaster you might be exxagerating the problem.

I say you tube it. Get a meter and prove your point.

I am so glad you ignored the link to the A/C unit db ratings.

It lends a lot of credence to your arguments.

bwwwahahahahaha! is not in the dictionary, I just checked, it is also not tought through hooked on phonics as crozette has suggested so anyone that can clarify what language it is or the meaning it would be greatly appreciated.

ps. I took 5 seconds to double check what I had typed.

I am eating lunch on the down town mall and there is a young mother with two children SCREAMING - how long before she gets a ticket? If the baby who looks to be about at the age of where she is teething doesn't stop should we lock her up for a night to teach her a lesson?

As I read the article again and read all these posts again I became curious. Have any of the residents sat down and had a well thought out non attacking conversation with any of these business owners to come to a common agreement on what would work best for all involved or is this strictly a battle of wills and nobody is willing to partner with someone else? The business owners would have to be willing to listen and not be on the defensive I understand that but has this approach been looked at? Some posted earlier to allow the music etc on Friday & Saturday nights, maybe expand that to include until 7pm during the summer months? I can't imagine in this economy these places playing to a full house much more than 2 or 3 nights a week.

And by the way, as hard as this mom is trying, these kids are still screaming. what's the number for 911, they need to be locked up.

Rob - "Caesonia put your house on the market, sell it and move. On your way stop by and thank all these businesses who have INCREASED your property value."

I don't live in Belmont anymore.

Go look at selling prices on houses in Belmont which is far more than just this area being discussed. They peaked in 2006 before the night club scene began.

This is just one more reason this discussion gets my attention, because of the dishonesty.

I live in Belmont and often visit the aforementioned establishments.
I also have screaming kids of my own, so I guess noise doesn't "bother" me as much as some. I know Bel Rio has made every effort to sound-proof the building - walk inside, you can see the panels on every wall and ceiling. He's an honest businessman trying to bring some music and sense of community to the area - quite frankly, we should applaud that vs. jumping up and down like children over what amounts to a 10-15 decibel dispute. In my experience, the clientele is not the young 20-something local-stabbing drunk, rather much so the opposite 40-50's, kids-in-college, drink microbrew, wanna cut-a-rug somewhere other than downtown crowd. If we drive these businesses out, we're back to overpriced NoVa-wannabe tapas and the best tire store on the East coast!

If Belmont doesn't suit your personal needs, then maybe it's time to move on. Peace.

Tim Brown- as usual people liek youa re rewriting history to suite you agena; I wanna party somewhere else and you shouldn't stop me. People did want to live in Belmont 15- 20 years ago. They worked hard to improve it, and the city rolled them, just like the City has rolled them by ignoring the zoning ordinances, and allowing in 7 restaurants on a block that can only support 3. They then let these places become loud music venues.

The people in Belmont who are ticked about the noise are those who moved in long ebfore the venues - you know 15-20 years ago, and started the gentrification process that was really on a roll by 2006 - all BEFORE THE MUSIC RESTAURNTS.

These people have been assaulted by constant noise, since the Pavillion. Enough is enough. There are plenty of places for loud music venues already in Charlottesville, no one is being cheated by having to restrain themselves in a mixed use neighborhood. If establishments there want to have music, I suggest they look at C-Ville Coffee, and how they model their music events - lovely quiet intimate affairs where people can really listen to the lyrics. They are always packed.

What's with all the misspellings and grammatical errors in the comments?!?! Clearly the city needs to spend more on education and less on restricting the rights of the hard-working taxpayers!!! Throw the bums out and replace them with new bums. These bums are no good!

crozetette, I'm holding out for the city to finally create and advertise a job entitled "do little". I am well qualified.

yepper, in case you are not aware.... the city is discussing laying off teachers, while at the same time they want to hire a new position called "neighborhood advocate".

Education takes a back door to everything else now.

Don't get me wrong now, I have always said the public education system has become a joke. But it's a bigger joke when you lay off teachers and hire a "do nothing".

quote: "Maybe if the offending establsihments and musicians were all paying the unhappy residents for their lost sleep they would feel differently."

Must not be much of a problem if all the unhappy residents wants is money.

Using your argument, I want Dominion Power to pay me for my lost sleep. Many nights I will fall asleep on the couch watching TV and the hum from the sub-station will wake me up throughout the night!

Yeah, we're on the same p[age now. If Dominion Power will pay me $200 a month, the noise they make is no longer a problem!

Hollow Boy is absolutely correct in both his time line, and his assessment of the real issue. There's a delicate balance in NCC zoning, and Bel Rio tipped the scale. Turned the damned scale over, in fact. For those of us who have been around a long time, it's continually frustrating to hear newcomers re-write Belmont history to suit their agenda. Facts is facts, and you can't change that.

Re night noise-- some noises are noisier than others. A loud car coming by with stereo blaring, may wake you up very briefly, and then you go right back to sleep. The brain trains itself quickly that garbage trucks make loud, but limited, noise in the early morning, then they move on quickly. That sound is not sustained over a 3-hour period.

AC units are noise, but they're frequently peceived as ambient (i.e. white) noise by many people. We're hardwired to come fully awake to sounds that are perceived by the brain as danger-- screams, sudden crashing sounds, glass breaking, etc. A band's set in a club will consist of varying tempos, at varying volumes. The brain hears an irritating thump thump thump, with the tempo changing with each song. It doesn't matter whether you're hip or square, music lover or mean ol' fart, that crap is irritating as hell. The surrounding neighbors don't hear any music coming from Bel Rio. They hear noises. This is something I think the musicians and Bel Rio management are choosing to ignore as they continually try to downplay the impact they're having.

I'm against the ordinance because it's too general and isn't addressing the real issue. It's a really poor Band-Aid. I'm for the residents continuing to have a good quality of life-- the quality of life that THEY created (not Jim Baldi). That said, I sort of understand the rationale behind the ordinance. I think we can all agree that it sucks when government is forced to step in when businesses like Bel Rio won't be decent neighbors. This is Bel Rio's fault for not seeing that a late-night music venue is wrong for that area. (We looked into renting it before Saxx moved in. It was immediately apparent the space wasn't suitable for a late-night music venue based on its construction, age, and close proximity to homes.) This is also the City's fault for screwing up the ordinance in the first place. However, it's not remotely the residents fault. They've done nothing wrong. But they're the ones that Bel Rio and the musicians are trying to smear. Shameful.

Gasbag - consdiering that one of the suggestions posited to the residents in a was that they take up a collection to put sound proofing in Bel Rio, I don't see why you feel that the etsbalishments shouldn't pay for residents discomfort. Idea of the hour is right - they can pay for the sound proofing on residential homes.

Using Dominion is a bad example.

1) They do have to do things to minimize their impact on surrounding areas.
2) They are a regulated monopoly providing a commodity considered necessary for survival. Thus, their profits are limited.

Non of the musicians or the establishments are regulated monopolies and can take home as much money as they want. Now they are facing a little regulation and they squeal.

Let you in on a secret ; no one has to do anything if they just turn the volume down about 10-15 dbs. The music will sound better.

quote: "Why don’t you pay for nearby homeowners to install soundproof windows?"

Ohh, just great! Another resident now wants FREE replacement windows.

If Dominion Power will give me FREE replacement windows I would be happy too. Won't cost them but about $10,000 on my house. :)

Wow. Maybe some of you would get more sleep if you included more stimulating activities in your day rather than the usual complaining about the noise of Bel Rio all-day, everyday on your computers.

I run 4 miles a day thanks. Sorry if I have a day off that has me working the net in lots of places.

"belmont sucks regardless" you must not have bothered to read the snow plowing thread, but if you did, your reading comprehension is clearly a little lacking. Another case in point is your misreading of a desire for people to be able to quietly enjoy their time in their own homes as an attack on musicians. What an absurd and melodramatic leap of logic.

Basing a noise ordinance solely on a decibel account is indeed a flawed approach.
The city's zoning ordinance that allowed a business with late night loud music to locate in a primarily residential is where the fault lies.
I lived in Belmont-1982-1993, before moving to the "other side of the bridge" downtown. Some mixture of business and residences is fine. Its nice to have a place in your neighborhood where you can buy a loaf of bread, have your car, vacuum cleaner, lawn mower repaired,whatever. These are businesses that benefit the residents of the neighborhood.
But an establishment that plays loud music late at night, attracts crowds and traffic from outside the neighborhood is not appropriate for a residential neighborhood. The city allowed this to happen, now it is trying to remedy its mistake by likely doing something that pleases no one.
Capsule history of Belmont: Originated as a blue-collar working class neighborhood(railroad workers, Frank Ix, etc). Largely owner-occupied houses. Then in the 60s and 70s,large increase in rental properties often badly maintained. Crime, drugs and other problems increased. Then things started turning around by the late 90s-loosely termed "gentrification." Property values increased, efforts made to deal with problems like crime and rundown houses, and Belmont became a desirable place to live for professionals and the middle class. Still more affordable than some other areas in the city, convenient to downtown and the University,etc.
Makes some of us who live in other neighborhoods wonder "could this happen in our neighborhood?" People moved to Belmont because of the way it was; they are right to be upset over unpleasant changes. Its not of question for long time residents of not going what they were getting into, not like someone who moves into the frat neighborhoods near UVa, knowing it will be loud, and then starts complaining.
It comes down to this. Does the right of Bel Rio to have loud late night music to attract customers and hence profits trump the right of the people living in their homes in the neighborhood to be able to sleep and otherwise live in peace?
Now my sympathy lies with the residents. Frankly I do not give the proverbial rat's patootie about the nightlife that so many are crazed about in this town. I am just glad I don't live near any of it.


"Your hundred year old windows and uninsulated walls are definitely part of your problem. Why stop at the windows? I should buy the block and turn all your houses into subwoofers”Šbut i digress."

They weren't a problem for 100 years until selfish people like you and Bel Rio showed up. It's YOUR problem for wanting to play in one. Considering how hurtful you and your fellow musicians have been by calling the unhappy residents all sorts of names and trying to degrade them as human beings.

If you wanted civility, you should have shown up a long time ago and opened a non name calling dialogue. Now you know you might be on the losing end and suddnely you have found your voice.

I woek frm 7-3 and am in bed by 9:00 go for it...

I also get "spanked" rather frequently by my girlfriend which makes me very very sleepy.


It most certainly is the City's fault, because they ignored the guidelines already in place that say things like limited parking needs. There should really only be 3 restaurants there. However, they never gave any of the restaurants a license for strip clubs, or music venues, they gave licenses for a restaurant. So Bel Rio doing any of those things is not only inappropriate but against their license.

This is about as ridiculous and controversy-stirring of a title as it gets - from what I gather, this seems to be a battle between Bel Rio and Belmont residents who can't stand Bel Rio. Somehow, this got turned into Jim Tolbert vs. the citizens of Charlottesville...typical...

I don't support a city-wide ordinance, but it's not because I necessarily agree that Bel Rio's business model is fine for Belmont. It's because this idea of a "city-wide ordinance" is aimed squarely at one establishment. Whether Bel Rio is right or wrong to do things the way they do, the rest of the city shouldn't suffer because of a law aimed at them. Why should businesses on Main Street, the Corner, etc. suffer because of gripes that have nothing to do with them?

crozetette - I suggest little Missy from Crozet that before you start criticizing, you do a little research yourself. I am willing to bet you haven't been around at any of the Belmont meetings, or any of the Zoning meetings either.

Read what the NCC guide says for that district and then look at the city code. It's all there for people to see. We can start with parking, for instance...

Some Restaurants were made to jump through a lot more hoops than others, which is unfair.

Old timer

I did put up... the manufactuer claims to be the lowest... 13 times lower than the nearest competitor.. and it is lennox.. a major brand name. My assertion is more than reasonable.

Some people cannot sleep with a dripping faucet... others can sleep through a fire across the street with a dozen trucks.

I am a citizen who is interested in fairness despite your accusations to the contrary. From what I have gathered there are people who can sleep through A/C units,diesel trucks etc. but cannot handle music.

I remain convinced that your inability to sleep through the music is more about the music as opposed to the level. I do not believe that you have the right to decide which type of noise is ok. The level however,I do feel you have a right to a reasonable say in. The problem I have is actaully practical. The Police cannot come out and deal with only one source of noise, they have a legal obligation to deal with all offenders.

If the music/noise/whatever is that overwhelming I would be interested to see it which is why I asked for it to be compared to an appliance that I could form an opinion from. Polite conversation is 55-60 db. It seems to me that if the law becomes 55db we will have one heck of a time trying to enforce the law. I would imagine that since the law is in force until 7 am that most school bus stops would become illegal.

I feel the number is too low.

I also feel that although you don't need to prove it to me you better be able to prove it to the city because I am sure that a musician will be smart enough to bring some examples to a hearing and make you look foolish.

to caesonia,sorry dude, i pay taxes on the money i make from music.its obvious that a few folks on this blog have no clue about the music business,or enjoy having any fun.

Christan - Wow. I had no idea there was such controversy. I thought you guys sounded great and played at an acceptable level. We had so much fun performing with you guys. You, Bel Rio and all the folks there were so gracious. Thank you. And thank you for trying to give some insight on the art of burlesque. I suppose some folks can’t really ââ?¬Ë?get it’ unless they attend a burlesque show.
I have to say, I am grateful to live here, just outside of Richmond, with compromising folks.

Best of luck to you Belmont.

I like music, I like trees, I like the city, I like the country. Each has it's place and charm and it's problems.

The rules of an open society are pretty simple. Do as you want to as long as it doesn't bother others. Bel Rio and its musical acts are bothering people and the day time businesses didn't.

The simple solution is for Bel Rio to change its acts or just turn the volume down. You can argue about the laws of decibels but it really is that easy. There are plenty of other places in town to do this.

When I was a kid we had 20 kids at a bus stop now the buses stop in front of each house like a taxi cab.

crozetette - I did answer your question. The code says it. Read it and see what it says. The city ignoring the code becuase they think something is cool doesn't change the fact that teh code defines what is supposed to be there.

But seeing as you are someone who has little to offer the argument other than petty little 'blah blah blays" I will just tack up to another one of brats who think Belmont residents owe you a play ground. You've got no credibility.

CAESONIA, Do you know that to be a fact. Or are you just blowing smoke up something we cant say here? Who said there should only be 3 restaurants You or the city?Just the facts jack! If you have them great if you dont , don't make stuff up like the faux news network does and present an opinion as fact!

@belmont sucks

You know who sucks? Childish ranters like yourself who get mad and distort things to the point of idiocy in an attempt to get credibility.

Trash trucks and Ememrgency Vehicles all have exemptions in the code becuase they are meeting necessary functions. Loud music between 11PM and 2AM in a residential district is not necessary. It's disrespectful.

If Belmont Sucks why are you so desperate to play there?

Grow up sour grapes.


Just turn it down 10 or 15 dB???? Does anyone here understand how dB are measured??? ITS A LOGARITHMIC SCALE!!! If you drop 10 dB, you have cut the sound energy in half.... 20 dB and it is cut by a factor a four...

Any ordinance like this needs a time component... 70 or 65 dB as a 1 minute average... If you are talking peak noise, you'd need to either carpet your sidewalks or hand slippers out to any woman wearing high heels...

60 dB is a loud, annoying dishwasher. The mega-expensive Braun models are in the 50 dB range...

Next, when you get a ticket, take it to court and cross examine the officer about the calibration of the sound meter... what are the specs of the meter? Your +/-3 dB meter that hasn't been calibrated in the last 2 years says I was over by 2 dB? So you don't really know that I was over do you?

hinton ave guy >

Sorry, the people unable to sleep arrived first. The musicians should have shown up 20, even 15 years ago, and done something constructive.


Unfortunately, your burlesque show does belong in the noise debate, because of what ensued. Are you saying you weren't playing loud music that night?

The police afterwords were called in to deal with drunken women lying in the streets and inebriated customers who were disorderly after the event. You know, generally making lots of NOISE and doing all the disrespectful things that seem to go hand in hand with LOUD LATE NIGHT MUSIC.

All your striptease proved for Belmont is how out of touch the LOUD LATE NIGHT music scene is with reality, and what is appropriate in a mixed use neighborhood closely surrounded by a totally residential neighborhood.

You and Bel Rio showed very poor inconsiderate judgment, which is exactly why they don't want you there, why they have problems with Bel Rio, and why people tend to not want loud music in the neighborhood beyond the need to sleep at night.

1) Poor judgment - how would I like my child to see this?
2) Inconsiderate - am I doing something that could dsirupt neighbors?
3) Selfish - the tax payer paid for the police to deal with your mess.
4) Disorderly - people falling down in the street drunk making lots of noise.

There is a music scene in Charlottesville that does not like what you do, and they don't cause the problems that you do. Maybe you should take a few pointers from them, because they all seem to be doing very well for themselves professionally.

@Christian: Oh jebus, the wounded artiste speaks. You're right. If Bel Rio keeps it down AS IS APPROPRIATE IN A RESIDENTIAL NEIGHBORHOOD, then the music will end. The entire Cville music scene will crumble and the joy will go out of our lives. The Southern will close, as will the Paramount and every other venue downtown and on the corner. Acoustic music, humming, and whistling will be silenced, and then you'll all be sorry!

God, when did musicians in Cville turn into such an entitled bunch of whiny girls?

@CC: Bingo, you got it.
"The attitude of ââ?¬Å?you’ve built it, now I want it, SO LEAVE if you don’t like my noise” is a pathetic commentary on what our society has become.

I have a question/ what about the db "spikes"?

Will a cop write a ticket for a "spike" that lasts no longer than a car horn, or a bus realeasing its air brakes?

What will the actual law specify as the the duration of the sound.

If it is just a spike then how will they know it was the music and not someone on the other side slamming a car door?

Inquiring minds want to know.

How would Belmont feel if that Grady looking guy that sings about Obama on the mall marched up and down the streets?

I like your response Christian, it was very poetic, written like a true artist. And that, in spite of my snarky comment poking fun! :D That's cool, I get where you're coming from. I don't live in Belmont myself but I can understand both sides of the issue. And I agree with what you said here: "This paper’s going to hit the stands and this article might as well read ââ?¬Å?these strippers won’t let my granny sleep”. There could have been any number of pics used as illustration for what goes on, and out of all the potentials, that was the one selected. It's a bit manpipulative. Amusing and entertaining for sure ;D which is most likely why it was selected, but, a little bit manipulative.

In the end the culprit seems to be Charlottesville's small size. At what, 10.4 square miles? And no chance of being expanded anytime soon due to the agreement with the County from decades ago? Something to that effect. Doesn't leave much room to breathe. Restaurant entertainment venues have to be squeezed into a residential area when location options become limited. If the city was bigger than that particular problem could be eliminated. These venues would be located in a business district, along with all the other businesses, and not adjacent to or across from family homes. Since that's not going to happen then there will always be issues like this cropping up.

speedbump - I understand very well how dbs work. My question to you is why do you think its necessary to play music that at a MINIMUM is a factor of 4 above a normal speaking voice in a small restaurant. It's being played louder if it is 75 dbs outside, so what is it inside? 90dbs?

How many times the speaking voice is that? Now we are at a factor of 8. Is 8 times the speaking voice inside a small place loud enough for you?

Can you actually even hear anything when it is that loud?

Let me tell you what is irrational and ridiculous - to think that your need to play something at that volume inside a small venue to feel like you are 'making music.'

Doesn't matter. You don't get to co-opt someone else's neighborhood for your need for loudness after 11PM at night. do it in your own neighborhood.

"And they were singin' - Bye Bye Miss American Pie ... this will be the day that I die"

Crozetette -

What a sweet little piece of empty lip pie you are. You are too lazy to do your own research for any intellectual authority, so flip your proverbial hair and pretend that what everyone says doesn't really count anyways just because you don't count.

I want you to remember this phrase.

Stand and deliver.

Caesonia did. She told you where to look. Either do the work, or be quiet. You'll save face that way.

caesoina Man you have some thin bark don't you!Whats the code # .What does it say so I can have more time to play.As for credibility Ill leave that up to the story tellers like you who think this stuff really matters to anyone except the parties involved . No one really give a fling f#@k what we think any how so get a life and light-in up

Hi CC:

"boo!, that isn’t even remotely true. The city’s boundary is fixed, but no business has been prohibited from locating in the county because of a revenue sharing agreement. Have you missed what’s happened on 29 North near the airport?"

Well to clarify, I wasn't assuming anything about a revenue sharing agreement, I was just thinking in terms of somebody who wanted to keep their business within Charlottesville's city limits and how if they wanted to do so, then they would be limited in where they could go. Downtown Cville and its surrounding neighborhoods have their appeal for many, more so than way out in the county up by the airport, so many would prefer to be located here, rather than there. Anyway, that's all I meant. And yes, I've definitely seen what's happening up by the airport. When we first moved here so much of it was empty land with trees. Now entire parcels have been razed down to red dirt with commercial real estate "For Sale" signs posted, along with all these new shopping centers that were not here when we first got here. I'm not happy to see that, but so it goes.

sorry cc.i am not a very good at typing.theres a bigger picture here.everytime an ordinance is past in one area,it begins to influence the rest of the city.i am in the process of coming up with some proposals to residents,musicians & restaurants.maybe become part of the solution.i have lots of influence in this town & i feel i can make it folks all enjoy yourselves today.

quote: "things that produce 60db or more...

You forgot one.

On a warm summer evening, crickets produce more than 60db.

GSOE - yes, lots of things can produce 60 dbs at night. Just like they do during the day. Ever wonder why they sound so loud at night though?

(raises hand, "ooh! ooh! I know! I know!)

Because other noise has died down since most people are inside or asleep in bed and cars are off the road, so therefore whatever little noise is being made sounds magnified and way worse than it really is???

Do I get a gold star??? :D

Are we going to stop the trash trucks from beggining work at 6:00am?

You people who are putting down musicians SUCK.

There are lots of jobs that make noise. Should we outlaw the firetrucks ambulances and police cars?

Maybe we should outlaw alarms between 11:00 and 6:00 so as not to disturb the light sleepers. So what if a few pweople get robbed.

In college they shut down frat parties at midnight because of one crybaby so we all made a point of honking our horns everytime we drove past his house after midnight.

CC are you the same CC that got SMOKED on the blog about the snow plowing..... you seem to know so much about the local government but you got spanked on that one...

to molokoultra.sounds like you havent had a date in a while.

Nothing says disrespect louder than a greedy business owner who refuses to limit noise after dark. Keep calling the cops and filing grievances. If they do not pipe down run them out of business and send the real "disrespecters" packing.

Here is another suggestion. Hire a good lawyer.

I can't wait for there to be a shooting, and the perp charged with violating the noise ordinance as well. Trumped up charges so they can plea down.

Right, CopShoppeWatch?

If you say so.

hinton ave guy, looks like you've been spanked and forced to wear a ball gag on this thread.

Wow...this is degenerating. It's gotten quite polarized. I feel terrible. I don't play music to make people angry. I don't want to invade anyone's home unwelcome. I was trying to have an open dialogue. That comment about other more successful musicians who I should model my career after seemed hurtful. That tortured artist thing was a little snarky. I think the Southern is the only other venue like Bel Rio in town. The Jeff does not count. it's high end national acts. You don't care about struggling musicians sob stories so I'll try to keep it down. The reference to my vast family fortune was predictable. Your hundred year old windows and uninsulated walls are definitely part of your problem. Why stop at the windows? I should buy the block and turn all your houses into subwoofers...but i digress.

All along I thought we were trying to keep the volume down. Ironically the acoustic drums are the loudest instrument, and the one that makes that throbbing noise invading your dreams. It's a necessary part of this genre of music. So bands don't belong in Belmont at night. That is a problem for bands in this town. I stood outside on Hinton at 3pm today to try and see if we could play below 60db. there was no way to measure it. The street stays around 70. Cars splashing puddles, voices in the distance, all spiking into 80db. this resolution will make music illegal at night. There's no compromise. It'll be like footloose all over again. I guess the mall and 29 north will still be commercial and able to host bands. I don't think it will stop bands from trying to play near homes. I don't think this has been a problem for all of Belmont. I think it was a problem for a few blocks of Hinton. When the music stops you'll still live on a street with 6 restaurants that serve booze. You live in a zone of transition and the noise ordinance may slow the inevitable but it won't stop it. DJs will still play canned electronic music and girls will still be puking on their party dresses in your lawn. There's a line that runs from 29 north...through the corner...down main street, down the mall, and it has snaked it's way up Hinton to Mas. Like it or not, you're part of the main drag. I don't think it can be undone. Maybe you can preserve the neighborhood that goes to sleep when the sun sets, but you may find you spend the rest of your lives fighting that street's inevitable fate. Good luck, I hope you find peace.

I love Oliver! How comes you guys missed the dinosaurs eating jesus? The best thing in this weary discussion. You go, Oliver T! Everybody's crabbin about spelling while he's out there condensing history.

things that produce 60db or more

1) house air conditioners
2) bathroom fans
3) my fathers tv
4) most obnoxious people
5) most motorcycles
6) most commercial trucks with diesel engines
7) most people in Belmont standing on the street whining about the noise.
8)the patio at mas any summer night when it is full of people.
9) the train that rolls through slowly for longer than stairway to heaven
10)city busses

Instead of changing the law perhaps the owner of the building could put a db limitaion in the lease when it renews.

C-ville coffee? Really? THAT'S your answer?

Or an Olive Garden and a Hooters?

Apparently some want this town (yes) to be a snoozefest and some want it to be a strip mall. The issue is Bel Rio, right? I mean, they're the only venue there having loud music late at night.

It's a great place to see shows. Maybe they need to invest in greater soundproofing and only have late shows on Friday and Saturday nights (as opposed to Christmas night, for example). Clearly the 55 decibel ordinance won't pass, but they do need to have some consideration for their neighbors, don't they?

And I'll go on record as saying that a strip club is exactly what this town doesn't need. List the towns in Virginia with strip clubs and compare and contrast to this town.

We don't need Olive Garden...a poor excuse for Italian food. Anyone with half a palette knows that their food is terrible! Bel Rio actually has better food than Olive Garden! Support local businesses that don't sell mass-produced wannabe ethnic slop!

Rob - So stabbings, bar fights, vandalizing cars and breaking personal property are the kinds of change we want to encourage? Late night crowds with lots of drinking are what you think teens should be doing? Where do you live and can I bring that kind of change to your backyard?

The people in Belmont who are upset are not interested in monitoring the volume at which people speak inside restaurants, they are interested in music that is so loud inside a restaurant that it disrupts people living close by between 11PM and 2AM. IN some cases the music has been so loud it could be heard blocks away. The loud music has attracted a rude and disruptive crowd that is loud when it leaves. Look at the sort of rude comments on this very thread, and how petty they are. So does your prune comment.

Yo Momma Home Owner - so which home do you OWN and have you owned since 1990? What have you done with it? Do you think stabbings improve it? Anything? Most of the upset neighbors do patronize the establishments.

Closed minded, self centered people point out the negative in things. What I clearly said was a SAFE PLACE WITH TIGHT SECURITY FOR TEENS, and there is no place in CVille for a strip club, couldn't agree more. There's a wonderful history in CVille, but people keep hanging onto that rather than look at the positives to growth. Asking for a blanket noise ordinance is ignorant at best. The idea to place limits so shows are on Fridays and Saturdays is wonderful thinking, it's a compromise. I'm also not a big fan or Olive Garden or Hooters would much rather eat at Mom & Pops diner but I am for growth, stimulating the economy and feen pretty confident that Thomas Jefferson isn't going to come walking through The Down Town Mall anytime soon and pass judgement on the growth and development.

that's *feel* pretty confident. my apologies.

This ordinance is absolutely absurd, and it will be a real shame if it passes. Do these Belmont and city residents, who are up in arms about the "loud" music keeping them up at night, not realize that these restaurants around the corner from them, that host live music, are significantly increasing the value of their homes. 55db is ridiculous and far from a fair limit! I guarantee that when it comes time for these residents to sell their 'primely located Belmont or downtown home,' they will surely milk the fact that they are 'just a short stroll to lively and eclectic downtown with fine restaurants and a lively nightlife.' If you choose to live in the city you need to realize that things are going to be a bit noisier. If you have a problem with where you are, then move! Charlottesville needs to embrace a lively nightlife, great restaurants, and the live music scene. Respect the fact that these establishments bring the city a great deal of revenue and make our city a much more attractive place to live.

For the residents so bothered by all the noise, I guarantee that sleeping with a fan on low would drown at nearly all of the sound from the nearby establishments. As if 75db wasn't bad enough, 55db is a complete travesty. Please don't let this ordinance pass!

I live on the same block as Bel Rio and La Taza since 1990 so STFU
youse guys who live three blocks away and never come out to enjoy the nice things that have happen in the hood.Can't wait for the new place to open.Tike bar is the best thing to happen in Belmont

You have to give the CC some cred here, they are willing to stand up for three of their fellow spandex traffic clogger uppers (which only one attended the meeting out of fear of retribution) to satisfy their dwindling crowd. The H... with the real people of Bellville.

Caesonia put your house on the market, sell it and move. On your way stop by and thank all these businesses who have INCREASED your property value. I live in Earlysville, if all these damn birds don't stop singing so loudly perhaps I will move and you can buy my house? I bet city council can get Dr, Dolittle to come in and let the birds know you don't approve of their volume. YOU'RE a very big part of the reason Charlottesville will allows be a 2nd rate town and never be a true city.

So if the closed Bel rio and mas wanted to play loud music you would be ok with it?

Is the issue the noise or the number of businesses?

Belmont has always had loud noise all night long. Didn't it used to be housing for the train workers when the trains went through at all hours? What about when the auto shops worked all night with the doors openn all summer?

Do the trains groaning through wake you also?

How about the trucks going down 64 in the winter when the leaves are off?

The outside A/c unit on a house puts out more than 60db and a row of them way more than that because they are similar frequencies.

Are we going to hire a meter maid to run around with a db meter and ticket the homeowners?

Fair IS fair!

@ Rob "Asking for a blanket noise ordinance is ignorant at best."

Belmont residents aren't asking for a blanket noise ordinance. Theya re asking for one for the mixed use type of area they live in. That is what the city is looking at now. A blanket ordinance is separate.

The article is misleading.

So now our Christmas present to the community gets pulled into the debate. I believe that there is a huge difference between a strip club and a burlesque show. The audience that night was composed of men and women who came for a theatrical show. These pictures are of a brief moment that is the climax of intricate dance with themes and costumes. It is out of context to show the final few seconds without including a chronology of what came before. It's like zooming in on the genitals of a Renaissance painting and squealing, "I SEE HOO HAAA!!!" These dancers are well versed in the vaudeville traditions. They are running their own show and are not being exploited, not grinding on men in dark corners. Does this town need a strip club? not downtown. Does it need another burlesque show? My vote is an emphatic yes.

please stay on topic-- moderator

I was outside Durty Nelly's a few days ago while a band was playing inside. I couldn't hear a thing from them outside. Someone who wants to keep the noise down can find a way.

As someone quoted in the article, and also very much involved in Belmont for many years, oh, and a musician and performing artist to boot, so I feel a few things should be clarified.

Firstly, I am not really sure how the whole city wide ordinance got mixed in. Obviously others who are afraid now want it. It really turned that meeting into a wash for Belmont residents desiring an ordinance. I don't think it should be the same city wide, because that defeats the purpose of zoning, and because of exactly what I said to council, " There is a time and a place for everything." I had a pleasant conversation with Katz after the meeting, and the interesting thing is, when I explained the way it was written, he indicated that would be better for Coup's than the current one. Why? well, he's not close to residential homes.

Be that as it may, I think I must disabuse several people here of the notions they have about who the concerned denizens are, our choice for living in Belmont, and the relationship between property values, and the NCC district development in the last 15 years.

CC and Reality Check are spot on with the history of Belmont, who we are, and why we are here. I moved in in the mid 90's because it was affordable, was not sterile housing like Mill Creek, convenient, and very quiet. It had a slew of businesses I could easily patronize for my needs, like car repair, furniture renovation, groceries, electrical, and if I wanted to dine out, the mall was within walking distance. That, that.... is what brought people to Belmont, and started them investing in the properties, and ultimately bring up property prices.

Long before the Pavillion was a blink on the horizon. Before Bel Rio. Before The Local. Before Belmont BBQ. Yes, even before La Taza and Mas. By 2002 when the latter two had opened, there were already bidding wars going on for houses to renovate, and resell. Why? well, because there was an obvious demand already in play in 'Downtown' Belmont, and the general residential market.

What Tomas did was recognize what was going on in the neighborhood he lived in, and got something going in the early part of the business curve. He used a property with a meh little restaurant, and built something that fit in and the community would utilize. Melissa Easter also got in early and had some great ideas I give her full credit for. i like how la Taza looks. Both she and Tomas also jumped through a lot more hoops too, regarding parking, and space. For their efforts, Belmonters like myself patronized them heavily.

After that, what has gone on business wise for 'Downtown' Belmont has been mixed at best, and disaster at worst for residents and residential properties. Contrary to what some of you who live outside the area want to believe, I know what the tax assessments have been in the two houses I have been in in Belmont, one which was right next to the NCC. The assessments went up, from the 90's until 2006, when the Pavilion was established, they slowed in 2007, when the desire to have loud music spilled over to La Taza, and they then flattened with the arrival of the night club mode. Definitely the mixed use convenience value was lost as businesses were pushed out for the mono-culture of restaurants catering to people from outside the area.

Are there people who don't mind the music? Sure, though I think with exception of Andrew and Hannah - who have moved by the way - they all live at least a block away. Some further. Some of them don't realize that their property values can be impacted, so if they can't hear it they don't care.

As for the NCC district, its not as big as people think. The Southern Crescent was rezoned from R-1 to NCC. Andrew and Hannah complained about Fitzgeralds which was there long before they were. The houses behind the Local and Tavola are zoned R-1. Most of Belmont, is, in fact, zoned R-1. Residential. My first house and second house were/are? Zoned R-1. That means that the owners of those properties have every right to expect it to be 55dbs after 11Pm at night, as they would elsewhere in R-1. after all, they can't make more noise than 55dbs, why should the business next door get to hit them with more than 55dbs.

The sound ordinance is designed to reflect that, as it should. This has nothing to do with people being yuppies, or hippies, or anti-music, but expectations based on the zoning guidelines and ordinances already in place. The unhappy people did not move in because of night clubs, they moved in quite a bit before, and they are the ones who did the 90% of the hard work revitalizing that neighborhood. (Adam is a special case, because he redid his house first, and then did The Local.)

While not everyone might agree on the noise ordinance, I do feel that at 55dbs, even Bel Rio will survive if it puts on the right type of act after 11PM. those residents who disagree won't be hurt by the loss of noise. The other residents have given up enough with their neighborhoods being used as parking lots. I think cutting down the music volume so less rowdy patrons leave late at night is the least that can be done. Remember, most of those residents live in R-1 zoning, not the NCC. Why should they be forced to live like it is Zoned industrial commercial?

That's not what they bought into, and that's definitely not what I bought into. Heck, my R-1 borders industrial and the train tracks, and they are less disruptive.

PS. I have some special for Mr Breeden.

Christian -

By the way, Vinegar Hill was never a part of Belmont or it's neighborhood.

I understand that it is 55dbs at HER property line. I also understand that if it is 74 dbs OUTSIDE her house it will be less than 65 inside the house and probably damn near 55db in the bedroom. If her heat is running the fan is at least 60dbs so I do not believe people who say that the noise is so loud they can't sleep. I think it has more to do with having a thorn up their butt that makes them miserable.

I imagine that on the nights that the music does not play they blame the inability to sleep on something else other than themselves.

I still think it is about music and control and and some sort of laughable notion that Belmont is actually different than before the lipstick.

I am comfortable with a compromise and have never said otherwise. Since I cannot go into anybodies bedroom to make a youtube video of the noise and comparisons the onus is not on me.

Old timer, you're a big slice of nasty pie, aren't you?

Your wrote: "I suggest your own pugnacious attitude is Caesonia’s vociferous tenacity." Your sentence is unreadable as written. Want to try a rewrite?

Since you can't seem to find examples of all of Caesonia's insulting, condescending, and increasingly shrill comments amongst the 900 posts she's left on this thread, I'll help you out:

•There is a music scene in Charlottesville that does not like what you do, and they don’t cause the problems that you do. Maybe you should take a few pointers from them, because they all seem to be doing very well for themselves professionally.
•GBSOE - well than I guess you aren’t the expert then at everything are you?
•You know who sucks? Childish ranters like yourself who get mad and distort things to the point of idiocy in an attempt to get credibility.
•Grow up sour grapes.
•They weren’t a problem for 100 years until selfish people like you and Bel Rio showed up.
•But seeing as you are someone who has little to offer the argument other than petty little ââ?¬Ë?blah blah blays” I will just tack up to another one of brats who think Belmont residents owe you a play ground. You’ve got no credibility.
•So Andrew can’t sleep, because of his lifestyle and ignorance about what he was buying into, and now he wants to make more noise. What a hypocrite.
•I never made that statement. Allison Ruffner did. So you obviously aren’t reading what people are saying. What a surprise.
•I suggest little Missy from Crozet that before you start criticizing, you do a little research yourself.
•You were happy to make money off of someone else’s misery. Now suddenly you are crying because you might be caused a little discomfort and due to the selfishness of your fans.

I love my music as loud as I can stand. However, I also have to wake up early in the morning for work. Now I dont live in the Belmont area, but I can understand where the residents are comming from. I wouldn't want loud music playing during the week when I'm trying to sleep. I can also see how this could hurt the resturants in the area. Unfortunatly for them they will not win this battle. You have far more private residence then resturants in the Belmont area. More then likely they will have to either adhear to the rule when it passes or move thier resturant elsewhere that isn't soo close to private residence...which is sad really.

as noted before, Bel Rio has done more than most venues when it comes to sound proofing with acoustic foam & special windows

"This thread is getting old but I can’t believe that I am the only one who would be interested in seeing some proof on youtube."

From your previous attempts at making your case, I can believe that you are among the few that would think a video on Youtube would constitute "proof" of anything.

Mr/Mrs/Miss View, it depends on what cop you talk to. Cops seem to do no more than is necessary now to finish their shifts and go home. I've never seen anything like it in my life!

I handed an Albemarle county cop a 1) revoked driver's license (at least 2nd offense, maybe 3rd offense), 2) no insurance, and 3) stolen license plates last night on a silver platter. The easiest arrest he could have made in the last year! They even confirmed the information I handed them was accurate. And there was no shortage of cops as 4 to 5 cars came and went for an hour because an unrelated crime had just taken place where we were. Not one cop sat out of sight and attempted to get this kid off the road.

The kid sat on the curb at Fashion Square and waited until all cop cars had left. And then... off he drove. So, bottom line, the kid is still out there drinking, using drugs, no driver's license, no insurance, stolen license plates... and will eventually end up killing or maiming somebody.

If I had reason to believe the county police chief would do ANYTHING at all about this, I would call him Monday morning and discuss it with him.

I learned a very valuable lesson last night. If I want a public safety issue taken care of, and I can provide the cop extremely good and accurate information, I will call a Virginia state trooper from now on. A state trooper would have sat out of sight for 15 minutes and taken this kid off the public highways!

Pound foolish liberally contradicts himself as well. Property rights are king according to the logic of his arguments in favor of allowing the demolition of the old Charlottesville Lumber building. But, when homeowners are forced into public housing through eminent domain, his decree that where they choose to live is "a run down dump of substandard housing and should have been bulldozed decades before" trumps all.

Wouldn't those same property rights also justify the feelings of those who "think they have right to keep things the way they want them regardless of what may be in the common interest."

I imagine that your bedroom is most likely silent old timer...

Don't Bother - If you don't want that to happen you better write the council. belmont made the mistake in trying to be welcoming and accomodating to new ideas and when those ideas succeeded, council appears to have forced more down their throat than they ever wanted.

I took the time to read about what was done over this Southern Crescent restaurant and they did ignore all the rules.

So don't count on having a simple conversation making the point. You need to be loud and clear or you will have it going on in your neighborhood.

It's been pointed out that a conversation comes in at 55 decibels.

If then, people were actually Listening To the music instead of Conversing (quite often drunkenly*), there would be no need to play much above 55 decibels - 60 or so would be fine.

This is of course easily verified by attending a performance at a Listening Room, where people have actually gathered to hear the music and not (get drunk and) jabber on and on, louder and louder, so they can be heard over the "music".

Actually, in the establishments that want higher sound levels they are talking about "live ambience", which is distinctly different from a "musical performance".

These businesses are also fighting for the retention of a "drinking scene", which is distinctly different from a "music scene".


*is that a word?

Christian, thanks so much for your post. Lots to think about there.

Regarding clubs you've played at before that have homes nearby-- it all depends. As you know from the places you've played, sound waves react differently depending on the circumstances and surroundings. How much hard or soft surface is there? Are there any buffers? There's a guy who lives a couple houses away from me, and I can hear literally every word he says when he's out in his backyard. But I can't make out a single word uttered by my immediate next-door neighbors. Sound is funny that way, as any police officer can tell you when asking witnesses what direction they think a gunshot came from and how far away it was. It all depends...

I take issue with your conjecture about nightclubs popping up in Belmont through a naturally occurring phenomenon. There was nothing natural about it-- it's all about the zoning ordinances.

Anyone at all?

I agree. I remember a story Wally Sieg told me about the jazz club he owned in L.A. and how, when the neighbors complained about noise, he lined the club with tires and never heard another word. That was the 1920's, surely we've got the technology to figure this out in 2010.


"She responded with anger and condescension to anyone who disagreed with her."

That's because everyone that disagreed with her position was condescending and belittling to those who wanted the ordinance, or to her.

That includes you pot, and your decision to enter the discussion with nothing more productive than a personal attack using profanity. At least in this case the kettle had a bit more to offer.

Keep up the noise Caesonia, and never mind these children who have nothing more to offer than profanity.

What if I like a place (ambiance, fare, service, etc . . .) , but not the music, when it becomes too loud to talk over? I even dance a little, but what should I do, just go elsewhere? I’ve always thought a good musician within any genre, can be effective at any volume.

pound foolish,

I moved in long before the restaurants, like those who are impacted an unhappy. So why should have expected to have to be affected by restaurants? Its more like the restaurants moved in knowing they were right up against residential properties.

The ordinance will be lowered in 3 months.

I still want to see someone like Jim Baldi stand in front of a longtime Belmont resident and tell them why he thinks they shouldn't get any sleep at 2am. I want to hear his rationale that his right to play loud music trumps their right to sleep.

Like Boon1980, I love loud music. But not in residential neighborhoods from 11pm to 2am. Why is that so difficult to understand? There are noise ordinances for residents in those neighborhoods. THEY can't play loud music that late, so why can Baldi?

Most of the people complaining about the noise level moved there before NDS sold the neighborhood out to Bel Rio. Bel Rio became the tipping point, mainly because they did little to respond to people's requests that they keep it down. This is the tipping point that many in Belmont predicted would come one day. Neighborhood Commercial zoning should have never allowed late-night music venues.

Boo! Maybe I went a bit far with my description in defending burlesque. I really don't think the Varietease belong in a debate about noise or mixed zoning. They add an obviously naughty air to this article and these images have the word stripclub getting thrown around a lot.
Strip clubs make no noise. Their clientele is primarily male. the environment is overtly sexual. stripper's costumes are fairly basic, and the music in the club is just a backdrop for gyrating. Burlesque may not be high art but it's an important theater tradition. By comparison I think that Boo Boo Darlin's work is intricate. It's campy and tongue in cheek, but the costumes, props and music combine to create something compelling and altogether separate from the "morbid fixation with excrement" contained in porn's definition. This paper's going to hit the stands and this article might as well read "these strippers won't let my granny sleep". I'll never change the minds of those truly Victorian sensibilities, I don't know why I bother. It's not as lofty as I may try to make it out, but not as base as others may want to believe.

As for the real debate here, I feel strongly connected. I play at Bel Rio on Thursdays. We've struggled to keep our volume as low as possible. I don't like to be in a room with a band that's too loud. Some neighbor was quoted as saying that they didn't want to live near a "teenage rock n roll" club. A lot of our audience is over 40. Many of them walk to the club from their homes. I try to be sensitive to the neighbors who may be sleeping, but I feel like the few houses that complain will always complain. I wish I could hear from inside their homes. It's hard for me to believe that our sound can really penetrate so much. I have a feeling that anything happening outside at night would disturb them. I think they sense us out there living a different life than them and it disturbs them on a deeper level.

I don't know why the music and dancing feels so good at midnight, but that's just the time for it. The fact is that Bel Rio has a stage, a sound system, books local acts, and often charges no cover. That is very rare in this town. Live music is life's blood for some folks. It's as important as knitting, collecting antiques and going on church on Sunday is to others. I'm afraid that even with a 50-60db sound limit, the problem will not be solved. We'll sound check with meters on the street. We'll dial it in so we're just under the legal limits (I think we recently found that we only occasionally spike to 70 now). We'll get all dressed up in our intricate symbolic costumes and sing our songs about life and love and loss. People will cut loose and dance away the pains of the day. The neighbors will still feel that infernal racket outside and call the cops.

@Tim - Thanks, I don't need drugs to bring me down. A nice quiet night of sleep usually does the trick. How novel. Maybe if you didn't revel in loud over amplified music, you wouldn't need a qualuud.

"Who builds up a lower income neighborhood within walking distance of the heart of a downtown area in a desirable city supported by a public university and expects it to go quiet at 11pm?"

Plenty of people who expect frat parties to remain on Frat Row, where they belong. Before the Pavillion, the DT Mall didn't keep people in Belmont up at night. In fact, before the forced injection of a couple of night clubs claiming to be restaurants, Belmont was a pretty quiet place to live. That's why it was gentrified.

This is what i mean about you rewriting history to suit your agenda.


"If we drive these businesses out, we’re back to overpriced NoVa-wannabe tapas and the best tire store on the East coast!"

No, you'll be back to Belmont BBQ, Tavola, Mas, The Local, Taza (Roast) a dance studio, an architecture firm, and someone else with a better business plan will fill the vacant spots.

Do you live next to those estabalishments? If you think it's not a problem, I suugest you offer to trade houses with those affected neighbors who don't care for it, so you can have what you support.

Hello--Earth to Charlottesville--this issue is decided, move on.

GBSOE - well than I guess you aren't the expert then at everything are you? You should know that our hearing sensitivity is not static, and neither is the atmosphere. 55db is not ridiculous at all when you consider that a simple 2 houses further, and that IS what the sound ordinance is. 55 Db is plenty loud enough if people stop shouting and just sit back and listen.

Maybe Bel Rio should have thought of that of what they were doing as a business model before they did it. There were businesses there before doing just fine and not bothering the neighborhood. Had zoning guidelines been followed the conflict wouldn't be there to begin with.

Maybe if the offending establsihments and musicians were all paying the unhappy residents for their lost sleep they would feel differently. But they aren't. They expect residents to give up something but they themselves won't.

Christian, I'm well aware of who you are, and know about American Dumpster and your other bands. We have freinds in common. I wasn't questioning that you hadn't played in a lot of places, I was pointing out that there are other places to play in Charlottesville besides Bel Rio. So here I am, a music lover from way back before you were even born, telling you that I've been in a few of these houses and heard what was coming out of Bel Rio. It IS very disruptive, it goes on too late for working folks, and nothing you say will change that very basic fact. If you've tried to lower the volume, that's very much appreciated. If I'd been INSIDE Bel Rio, I would have enjoyed the music very much. But what you hear inside a home near there is a completely different experience. As a musician, I know you understand this.

What you don't seem to understand is what came first-- the residents or the zoning. You also show no knowledge that you understand what NCC zoning is supposed to do and why it even exists. Certainly not a late-night music scene. But mostly I'm totally shocked that you don't even know where the residential homes are around there! I know you've been to Hannah and Andrew's. Did you not realize that they have neighbors?

Look at it this way: Belmont is being redefined and reshaped, but not by the people who live there 24/7, and not in ways that many of them want. It's not cool when other people force their vision on you of what they think your neighborhood should be. And it's not cool when one business pushes the zoning to the tipping point.

Caesonia BlaBlaBla you still didn't answer the question.Was what you stated fact or fiction (opps i meant opinion) As for going to the city meetings I live in Crozet so I see enough Izod and LL Bean stuff at those meetings .So I dont drive to town for more.

Christian, please don't make this a battle of musicians vs fogies (your Footloose comment). It's not. Where did you play before Bel Rio opened?

I understand the importance of having plenty of good live music venues in Charlottesville, and I've been around long enough to see many of them come and go. None of them, however, were located in residential neighborhoods.

The fact that places like C&O downstairs, the Mineshaft, Starr Hill, Tokyo Rose, Satellite, and Traxx no longer exist is sad, but shouldn't be Belmont's problem. Bel Rio is a good idea in a bad place. With all the commercial space standing empty right now, this is a great time for someone to open a venue.

Caesonia, no, I have never wondered. I know why.

The point is 55db to 60db is absurd.

Instead of passing this silly ordinance, City Council should simply send letters out encouraging more businesses to move out into Albemarle County.

I live near a Dominion Power sub-station. On hot summer evenings when demand is high it puts off more than 60db. Come park bside it one evening and you will fully understand the dilemma Sheriff Willie Morris found himself in recently. It will absolutely drive you crazy!

If City Council is going to set a dicebel limit of 55db to 60db in Belmont, it should apply to all populated neighborhoods! I want City Council to ban power sub-stations in the city limits. :)

Christian Breeden, you come from one of the wealthiest families in Charlottesville, which pocketed millions from the sale of Biscuit Run. Why don't you pay for nearby homeowners to install soundproof windows?

Since I live near Bel Rio and The Local, I'm sleep deprived and don't have the attention span to read all the comments, so apologies if this has already been suggested.

You notice I'm the only one in here without anonymity? I'm trying to measure my words very carefully. Some of the more absurd extremist remarks are coming from faceless posters on both sides of the fence. I don't think I've gotten into much name calling. The thought that there was room for compromise here seems a bit skewed. I have always turned down when asked and it's never enough. There IS an old fogie "we don't want no dancin in this neighbor hood" undercurrent here. I was talking to a 70yo bandmate yesterday and he listed the places that he used to play around here. He said that the crackdown on DUI is what really killed the old dancehall model. It's true. If you play farther than a few minute's walk or cheap cab ride, You have to work ten times as hard to get half the audience.

I don't have my zoning map handy, but you say a club is not appropriate in a residential area. I think the residential area is a block away and you're in the "mixed" which actually covers many local night spots. So a decibel limit in the city that might as well read "less than silence" is a huge threat to the musical nightlife of this town. People can't help but rally.

Where have I played? I was one of the first shows at Sax. Miller's, Fellini's, The Box and Atomic Burrito before that, Zocalo, Mono Loco, Maya and Southern Culture before that, The Station, West Main, Orbit's, Gravity Lounge Outback Lodge, Satellite Ballroon, Jaberwokee, Coupe De'Ville's, Michaels, Buddhist Biker Bar, I played the first show in the Pavilion and opened there for Lynard Skynard and Little Feet. I'm sure I missed a few.

I'll say it again. I am not your problem. Time and space are your enemy. If I pack up my gear and go terrorize some other neighborhood with my infernal racket, you will still be sitting in the naturally occurring drainage ditch for a rapidly growing population's urge to party. Eventually your finger will have to come out of the dike.

to caesonia.sounds like you are a pretty angry person.i will give you some free guitar lessons,if that will make you feel are far from the truth.i myself raised two children from working as a musician since the seventys.make sure you know what you are talking about.

to sowhat.we are talking about making a living in c-ville.if you have a problem with that,you are probably hanging round the coffee shops too long.

so long. no more replys.

Hey Music Man I didn't refer to anyone as a "whiny girl" or even the correctly spelled "whiney girls," but your post sure makes you seem like one. Why does your chosen means of making a living mean that others ought to suffer because of it.

If you think that the general public is going to vote politicians out of office because the politicians in question are trying to keep you from being a pest, then in the words of the immortal music man Mr. Rob Halford, you've got another thing comin'.

Wow, I got distracted from finishing my post for a few minutes but the whine kept flowing. Music man must be one of those "emo" kids.

Here's my "?" to fix my post above.

to cc,sorry to piss you off.i play lots of music & inspire a lot of people.because of this,nothing you say will hurt me.sorry will not talk on this blog again.

"i pay taxes on the money i make from music.its obvious that a few folks on this blog have no clue about the music business,or enjoy having any fun."

Your fun stops at my door. Have all the fun you wish. Sing as many songs as you wish. Do not invade my space or my sleep with your fun. When you pay my bills you can then decide how much sleep I am "entitled" to.

If you really want action. Find out where these business owners live and hire some kids to play music outside their houses when they are trying to sleep. I am sure the legal decibel level is much higher in the daytime.

Music Man-- why are you presenting this as people trying to drive music out of Charlottesville? This is about one poorly located late-night music venue and the negative impact on its immediate surroundings, not about the overall state of the Cville music scene. Like I said, I'm against the ordinance, just like you are. But I'm not going to demonize the surrounding residents and tie their complaints into my ability to earn a living or not.

I was the poster who said that some Cville musicians have turned into a bunch of whiny girls. I've lived here a loooong time and know lots of musicians. Respect? Any non-whiny musician who shows respect to Belmont residents will get nothing but respect in return. It's a two-way street, son.

So first I called someone whiney girls and now I'm pissed off. I'm sure glad I've got music man to tell me what going on in my life. I would have never know either of those things without his help.

@little elmer - so you pay taxes. So what? So do the residents getting blasted. So do musicians who don't keep residents up at night in their homes with loud music.

The late night music scene is not the sum-total of the music scene in Charlottesville, and it is not the sum total of the music scene period.

No, I am not angry. I am just sick of a bunch of people who think that they have a right to force their lifestyle on someone else just because they think their lifestyle is 'cool,' make money of their 'coolness,' and thrust their 'coolness' down on someone else's life style.

See you should have gotten involved in finding a peaceful resolution before it got to this point. But you didn't. You were happy to make money off of someone else's misery. Now suddenly you are crying because you might be caused a little discomfort and due to the selfishness of your fans. Why don't you learn to have a little fun yourself not blasting out loud music.

Music Man - next time show up before things get to this point, and find a peaceful resolution. Don't see back and say " not my problem due, get a life,' and then bleat 'poor helpless me' when thigns come to a head.

You are a part of the problem. Take some personal responsibility.

"Sorry, the people unable to sleep arrived first. The musicians should have shown up 20, even 15 years ago, and done something constructive."

The fact of the matter is that YOUR inability to sleep is YOUR problem.

There is nothing preventing you from sleeping except voices inside YOUR head that think you are entitled to whatever pleases you.

How many among us have fallen asleep in front of the TV. How many fathers can sleep through a crying baby?

How many among us can sleep despite a barking dog?

I suppose a dripping faucet would keep you up also.

It really sounds like a problem that you need to fix from inside your head.

I have seen people nodding off inside the Pavillion while the band is playing.

Your just mad.

80 dB inside for a guy playing an acoustic guitar is about right... that way you can still hear the music over everyone else talking to one another, clinking glasses, etc...

The real problem is that 55 in unenforceable even if it were a rational number.... background is pushing that and the signal to noise ratio is horrible...When heat pumps are going and cars are passing. No chance of getting a background level 10 dB below what you're measuring... I've done sound testing... 55 dB is the level in my house with the AC on...

Too many wannabes are trying to make a living playing music when they should be working at a factory. That's what's destroying the economy and bringing in a horde of first-class citizen illegal immigrants.

hinton ave guy-

Sorry, I sleep through trains, trash trucks, and even have through a war zone. The people in Belmont who are complaining have never had trouble sleeping until the noisy loud late night music. Fort Belmont was not built until the night clubs moved in. So the problem is clear.

But since you claim to be such a sound sleeper, please tell me your sleeping hours so I can have a band play outside your house during those hours. I am sure a lot of young teens would love the extra money.

GSOE You hit the nail on the head another attempt to stop "Business" for growing in Mayberry. The counties just as bad how about the Arby's guy with the signs in the window. I guess the food wasn't healthy enough for the "Law Makers "in this part of the world. As for populated neighborhoods it a frigin city not a farm!!

crozetette, when have I not head the nail on the head? :)

After the decibel wars are over, the whining residents will go back to complaining about the traffic.

CSOE What Traffic ? I thought C-Ville was a permanent "Funeral Procession" !

the "music scene" in this snotty town is a JOKE!

@T-Hoo, just because those who are asking for the ordinance aren't on the Hooks blog doesn't mean they aren't out there. The reason why the city began to consider something city wide is because the Belmont frakus got a LOT of email going into them asking for something similar.

Yeah, I am fighting for those still living in Belmont whoa re tired of the noise, but couldn't escape easily like I could.

@Rob, the more sarcastic and petty you get, the more you show you don't really have an argument. Build your own place to play in Earlysville, and invite all the loud bands you want. It's just Earlysville, and who cares, right? Just a couple of rednecks out there.

"In the end the culprit seems to be Charlottesville’s small size. At what, 10.4 square miles? And no chance of being expanded anytime soon due to the agreement with the County from decades ago? Something to that effect. Doesn’t leave much room to breathe. Restaurant entertainment venues have to be squeezed into a residential area when location options become limited."

boo!, that isn't even remotely true. The city's boundary is fixed, but no business has been prohibited from locating in the county because of a revenue sharing agreement. Have you missed what's happened on 29 North near the airport?

Exactly Buddy Holly, if this establishment closed, the complainers would find something else to be complaining about in the neighborhood. And you are right about the hum of an ac unit, my neighbors is incredibly loud, same w/the trucks on 64 late at night, the morning birds singing starting a 4 a.m. are down right loud as well.

I also agree support your local businesses. No doubt that there are plenty of people that would love to own a house where a complainer lives, if they could afford it. Move to the country, then complain there are no stores, get the Food Lion, CVS, and The Market to come to you.

Unfortunately we don't live in Utopia, in an all perfect world. It's called LIFE.

It's a tough one, personally I like having a local pub, restaurant, coffee shop in my neighborhood that I can walk to, and I like the "charm" of it all. "The City" should have never given permits to these places in the first place, in theory, being it's residential. The parking issue is more bothersome to me than the noise.

I moved to Belmont 30 years ago because it was the poor side of town and all I could afford. Now the yuppies and huppies (are those terms used anymore?) have taken over as the old residents die off. I thought Cville was "progressive". I agree w/Tim and Crozette whole heartedly. Belmont is now the hip and happening place to live, and once they take over they complain when entities come to the neighborhood that make it "cool"? These people are the ones that changed the dynamics of this community by moving here, so deal w/it. They don't own the place, albeit I am sure some think they do. Belmont was a much better place before all the yups took over. This is growth, and tax dollars for the city, and it's done.

And I agree w/the Gestapo mentality, this town will ordinance you to death. And I LMAO once it was realized the African Drumming was effected, a bit of a catch 22 don't ya think? It's discrimination that one decibel level doesn't have to apply to all.

How many of the complainers have people in their homes that snore ? Use ear plugs! I would rather put up w/some late night music noise than to listen to a dysfunctional family screaming and yelling all night that has been drinking. Personally I can't stand screaming babies and kids, how about putting a decibel level on them? What about weed eaters, chain saws, and lawn mowers, I have a neighbor that loves to play w/his tools at the crack of dawn, are the police going to ticket him for waking me up?

I want to serve on the do nothing, do little committee.

Bob Fenwick would never have let this happen. Kristin Szakos is a waste of a council seat.

Bob Fenwick would have ruined this towns economy. He would close businesses that were to close to parks and his house, Bob Fenwicks only agenda was keeping The Y from expanding so he could have another 10 acres of grass to look at. Again with the old school thought process. Bob Fenwick and Thomas Jefferson probably had coffee way back when so if Bob had his way this internet thing wouldn't be happening either.... Mr. Van Winkle it's 2010 and if Cville wants to see property values go back up, jobs be created and crime go down due to more people working than jump on board. Bob fah q.

Caesonia, have a quaalude. Who builds up a lower income neighborhood within walking distance of the heart of a downtown area in a desirable city supported by a public university and expects it to go quiet at 11pm? C'MOOOOOOON MAAAAAN. And for the record, Tim Brown does rewrite history, but not to support my agenda. You should research my Tecmo Bowl stats. Sure Bo Jackson was unstoppable, but don't sleep on the Eight-One running that deep route on the top of your projection screen, don't sleep baby girl...

Dear Caesonia why are you talking about stabbings improving anything?Do you mean the thing that happen a year ago to a guy who did not even get stitches? I came in 90 as a renter and now I own
What have I done with it put down the knife and i might show you.
New roof new fence ,heating and air the list goes on.

Yepper I didn't know spelling counts .The next time Ill pull my car over put down my coffee stop reading "Stripper Monthly" and wipe the jelly donut stuff of my face before I email anyone . One more thing Ill activate my spell check if I can figure it out.

Gasbag I majored in do little or nothing , so you can be my assistant

If you can't sleep because of a little back ground noise then move to the country.

Real Estate in Gerogetown starts at 600k for a 1 bedroom. In manhatton it is even more. Thry don't mind the noise.

are they going to ticket the trains planes and automobiles?

Maybe you just need to RELAX and sleep will come. Do you think jesus got a deep sleep knowing a dinosaur could eat him at any time?

GSOE Lets you and me apply for that job. We know everything and I'm sure you could use the extra 62.5k as much as I can .Especially for a part time job. Better yet I'll take 50k and save them some money they can use for "Lap" dances at the new strip clubs that are coming to town!

Perhaps a way to deal with this would be to have a meeting between bel rio people and the homeowners in the homeowners home while a band is cranking it up at the club.

Maybe some perspective could be obtained from this.

Oh heck. I can's stay away.I heard an interesting concept today. "In order to be right, you have to make someone else wrong"

There are a few different arguments being thrown around here. One common statement is that if the music were simply turned down in the first place then this wouldn't be an issue. The question arises of how softly an act would need to play to not rile the neighbors. Some have stated that Hinton avenue is simply the wrong place for late night activity on any level. Then the argument arises that there really aren't that many places to play right now, and a place like Bel Rio does need to exist somewhere near a populated area.

I don't consider what I do "dinner music" I think it works well after diner. That's the reason 10pm seems like an optimal start time. I do think that my crowd has usually jumped from place to place. They're out to have a drink with friends, share a meal and take in some entertainment. You can do this on the mall, and if you're a glutton for punishment you can go to the corner to change it up. People crave variety and I think that's the reason Belmont's center has developed a nightlife recently. I'm sorry for calling it a "drainage ditch for the growing population's urge to party" If I'd have called it the crown jewel in this town's newest bar crawl destination I think the effect on those opposed to Hinton as a place to party would be the same. The bands that play there, the bar owners, the city council, and the patrons did not decide to change life for the residents there, they are just part of a naturally occurring phenomenon.

I try to be very sensitive to the ears in the room. It's true I've played some loud shows before. I hate to see people on the other side of the room struggling to communicate. I've played with guys constitutionally incapable of turning down. I've stopped working with two of them this year. great chops, dynamic range of a chainsaw. I bet I could disturb a conversation with my naked voice and an acoustic guitar. I know loud talking and laughing and carrying on can disrupt me when I'm doing the lonesome balladeer thing. It is discouraged to talk at the quite shows. You go to a coffee house or listening room and try to carry on a conversation in the audience. The worst is playing in front of a tv playing a football game. The crowd goes wild at all the wrong moments.

I went to Bel Rio last Thursday and folks asked if I was going to crank it up. I tried to do the opposit. We kept the levels lower that our comfort zone. It was awkward and hard to muster high energy at low volume. A table right up front had just finished dinner and they stayed and chatted for a good long while. I could hear every word they said while I was singing. It was hard not to get distracted. I still play other places too. Most of them have homes nearby as well though. I think that I'm well versed in the issue and more willing than most to try to reach a compromise. I still wonder if I need to boycott Bel Rio because of the homes it disturbs. I don't think that will stop them from booking other bands. I'd hate to do it, as I love the room and the ambiance and get along quite well with the management.

Thank you to all the posters who have gracefully posed their arguments, as it has supplied so much food for thought.

1) vouchers are a republican platform.
2) If they choose to have subsidized housing in my neighborhood it is ok with me so long as they don't run their air conditioner in the summer in violation of the 55db rule.
3)I respect property rights. I just know that if I live in the country I smell cow manure, and If I live in the city near restuarants I will most likley hear noise. If I live near a hospital I will hear ambulances, if I live near an airport I will hear planes and if I live in Belmont I will hear people whine.

Pound Foolish,

I see you now decide the best thing to do is to lower to personal attacks. Well that is what is always comes down to with people who like to support school vouchers. I'll keep that in mind when I decide I want to force liberal ideals down your throat in your neighborhood. Maybe take away a house to have a nice subsidized bit of housing with a communal garden around it.

I'll be you squeal louder than a stuck hog and are all over property rights and personal space then.

"Yes, Andrew moved. Having spent the night there a few times I know that Fitzgerald's air compressor sounded like it was in the house and impact drivers were like Jackhammers rattling the walls."

Well, Fitzgerlad's has been there for 40 years. I guess Andrew and Hannah should have thought about it before they bought the house. That's really one of the big criticisms of the residents against the night club noise supposedly. They somehow ' moved in after.' They were there first. Jim Baldi should have thought about that before deciding he wanted to run a night club instead of a restaurant.

So Andrew can't sleep, because of his lifestyle and ignorance about what he was buying into, and now he wants to make more noise. What a hypocrite.

That's the point of zoning, whether you like it or not. If you want to have a late night venue you do it in a late night area. Not a place that is obviously not suited for that.

As Reality Check says, there is nothing natural about what happened. There are plenty of vacant commercial spaces right now to be used for a place for you to play. Get off your duff and help get one going.

quote C.Breeden- "That strip over by Wrights is starting to hop. Perhaps I should set up a stage in the junkyard and try to draw the night terrors on down the line?"

Could you have made a better argument in favor of a city wide ordinance?

Old Timer, you wrote: "Every example you gave was a direct response to the rudeness already displayed by anyone unhappy over the proposed ordinance to those who did support it or Caesonia directly."

Nope. She responded with anger and condescension to anyone who disagreed with her.

You both sound like miserable people.

@ Christian. I've been reading your comments and agree with Old Timer that your attitude is condescending. Unfortunately I doubt you have the skillz to back up that much attitude. Your Vinegar Hill argument is just dumb, but I'm glad that you are attempting to educate yourself.

As far as your comment about the Mall not being big enough, take a look around. There are empty buildings there just waiting for you to turn them into late night music venues, so go for it. Regarding your rude proposal to start polluting the next residential neighborhood over from Belmont, are you serious? I can promise you, the residents there would toss you out of the Woolen Mills so fast your head would be clattering like a set of castanets. Thanks for the warning though. We have no intention of letting our block become the next Belmont, so keep moving and hasta la vista!

"I am so glad you ignored the link to the A/C unit db ratings.

It lends a lot of credence to your arguments."

You are a nice piece of hypocritical pie aren't you?

You managed to ignore the central issue of different types of noise and their relative disruptive characteristics combined with volume. You've run down the Belmont neighborhood, you've focused on AC units to ignore white noise, you even are trying to suggest some sort of subtle bigotry here.

I'll give you hint; when you use name calling you are the one being the bigot.

If you had a credible argument you would focus on the real issue of loud disruptive noise and it's disruptive patron at an inappropriate time of the day or night as it turns out to be for a residential area.

By the way, a link to a single product does not disprove Caesonia's statement of her own AC units. It is a claim made by a particular manufacturer. I don't see you going out and measuring sound on her units and placing them on YouTube.

Put up or shut it.

Christian,There is nothing you can say because these people think they have right to keep things the way they want them regardless of what may be in the common interest. (which is why zoning has "variances" )

Vinegar hill was a run down dump of substandard housing and should have been bulldozed decades before. It was not eclectic Bourbon street it was a rodent infested crime infested place regardless of who lived there. The stories and lore are fine but I hardly think we needed to preserve blight in the name of history.

If they pass a 55db law as it applies to music then under equal protection should it not apply to any noise from any business? Shouldn't that mean that any commercial air conditioner that you can hear at a residence be outlawed? Fair is fair.

Belmont property values did not flatten out because of the pavillion or development it flattend out because people realized that even remodeled the houses were still overpriced nothings that realtors had to use words like "eclectic, unique, charmer, etc" to unload to the next semi snob who thinks they are "better" than someone who would live in Mill Creek. (which is silent at night by the way)

The bulk of the property value growth was caused by investors flipping houses and there are a lot of people in belmont who are living in straw houses with granite countertops.

I find it humorous that the people who live in Belmont think that they singlehandedley turned a sows ear into a silk purse. Belmont is more like a pig with lipstick. We will all see in about five years when all that "lipstick" the fly by night investors put on peels off.

This argument boils down to one word "reasonable"

If you live in a house and cannot sleep then make a youtube video of the noise level in your bedroom when the band is playing compared to say a fan and a blender on vsarious speeds and convince people of your side of the issue.

Right now all I have been convinced of is that there are some people in Belmont who need a little more satisfaction in the bedroom and since they can't get it at home they want the city to help them achieve it.

@Enough said

"No, I’m not part of the problem. I don’t live in the neighborhood, nor do I frequent Bel Rio or play music. I have read the comments to this story with interest and appreciate all perspectives, but your postsââ?¬â??full of insults and angerââ?¬â??are becoming tiresome and obnoxious. They are not convincing anyone of anything. You sound like a 50 year old child who needs something truly important to worry about."

Curious. I reread the entire thread and find myself scratching my head over the supposed insulting posts from Caesonia. I see her answering point by point. I do see a lot of condescending comments from those on the other side of the argument. Let me give you some examples.

>>Vinegar hill was a run down dump of substandard housing and should have been bulldozed decades before. It was not eclectic Bourbon street it was a rodent infested crime infested place regardless of who lived there.<>Belmont sucks regardless<>Belmont is more like a pig with lipstick.<>you will still be sitting in the naturally occurring drainage ditch for a rapidly growing population’s urge to party.<>Caesonia, stfu already<<

Why would anyone be surprised to see someone react negatively or in some level of angst over those iterations about something they have created?

I suggest your own pugnacious attitude is Caesonia's vociferous tenacity. I hope those words don't confuse you because you have a very limited vocabulary based on blunt profanity.

Maybe they should just hire a mack truck to idle outside the restuarant while the band is playing. I am quite sure that a leglally parked diesel truck would drown out the band.

I think the suggestion to make a you tube of the noise comparing it to other noises would go a long way to settle the debate.

I would be interested to know whether the problem is as severe as has been alleged.

Pound Foolish -

Reasonable neighbors in any residential neighborhood do not have loud parties with loud amplified music 3 nights a week between 11 PM and 2 AM and their guests stumbling out in the streets talking in loud voices and slamming car doors.

Unreasonable neighbors do and the cops get called on them. When they do it too often the cops take them to jail and they get charged.

Reasonable neighbors in a residential area turn their TV's way down at 11PM if their windows are open. They will turn it down too if their neighbors ask them politely.

In a residential neighborhood where most people have to get up at 5AM to go to work, blenders, TVs, and other electronics are not playing because people are in bed asleep by 11PM.

Bel Rio is licensed to be a restaurant. Restaurants stop serving at 10PM. It is reasonable for people toe xpect Bel Rio to behave like one, not a night club.

You just sound to me like one person upset because your mommy and daddy never told you no and now you are having to learn that sometimes the answer is "No, you opened a restaurant you cannot have a nightclub and keep neighbors up."

Hi I'm back with my morning musings. It's true that many of these arguments are totally tangential. This isn't about the value of the houses or the quality of the music. the core argument is about a basic problem and the search for it's solution.
I wish I had more data. I'd love to see a scale model with the specific houses that are absorbing the sound. The original limit of 70db at the property line seemed reasonable to many folks. that's really only as loud as two people talking. It's a public street, and in theory a sound at this level shouldn't be able to penetrate your home and keep you up, even if it goes on for hours.
People were being disturbed. Eventually they called the cops. I don't think anybody measured sound at this point. The level was just "too loud". The cops said, "turn it down" and left. It didn't get turned down enough, they were called again. It's still too loud. Turn it down more. Now this assumption arises that70db was too loud near homes and 50 will fix the problem. The street hums at 50 all night, so really that is a law that calls for a business to be silent.
If we go back to a night when it felt like an unreasonable sound level outside, and the authorities were there, I would have to wonder if the law was being broken. Maybe the club was over 70db and measuring it, adjusting it would have solved the problem. I don't think that ever happened. Maybe measuring it would still not catch the bass frequencies moving underground and coming up through your floor. A sound engineer might point out that even 50 db in the air can keep you up when low frequency is rattling your home. I think there are special circumstances around these homes and this club. Maybe utility pipes or some underground channel connect them and create a sound conduit. I know it seems far fetched, but I think it's worth considering.
A common sentiment here is that if Bel Rio would just turn down then this wouldn't have gone to the council's review of the law. There's a bigger argument here about live music in this neighborhood. The people who see their neighborhood changing for the worse probably don't want it to turn down, they want it to stop. I think that there's a chance that the law will change, the music will try to adjust, the cops will still get called, the real problems with the sound will go undetected, and everyone will feel hopelessly imposed upon with no resolution.
I usually end my little rants with an attempt at humor. I make some grand sarcastic remark and hit submit. Facial cues and tone of voice don't read on here, so people take my vain attempts at lightening the mood offensively. I just want to thank the level heads in the room once again.

comment deleted by moderator (be polite, folks)

@ Caseonia
"They are asking for one for the mixed use type of area they live in."
-I would argue that YOU are asking for such mixed use ordinance, please don't categorize all Belmonters in the same bucket.. especially your bucket. I certainly don't see any overwhelming support for the ordinance in these posts.
You propose we could have "someone else with a better business plan will fill the vacant spots."
-Not everybody has the creativity, capital, or intestinal fortitude to try something new in hopes of bringing people together in these times of economic uncertainty. Again, we should be applauding the committments made by Jim and his colleagues to try and improve our community. I simply don't buy the argument that there is any sort of drunken deluge come 2 am every fri/sat night.. if that existed, I would hear it given my location. I'll concede that there are very likely isolated incidents, but we can't ordinance ourselves to death over a couple of loud drunk people.
@ Christian, thanks for the insight. The picture above would certainly lead one to draw some likely inaccurate conclusions.
@ Tim Brown, you are a crafter of words.


Well Rob, take two seconds to re-read what you write, this way you won't get comments like that. "Allows" instead of "always"? How does that even happen? It's like people's brain wires are getting crossed when they're typing, and the end result is entire wrong words being used, not just mere spelling errors or typos. It's epidemic around here. What's up with that? boo!

Boo It must be great being "perfect" Did you parent send you to private schools or are you just hooked on phonics or something . Lighten up.

quote: "In other actions at the February 16 meeting, Council discussed creating a new 'neighborhood advocate' position...."

I wonder whose wife, family member or friend needed a job this time?

Talking of laying off teachers, yet they have the money to hire another "do nothing"!

.... agreed to purchase and then lease for 40 years a property on Fourth Street as a homeless shelter....

Sounds like another new publicly funded position maybe? We will need a $125,000 a year director to run this facility now. Lay off two more teachers to fund this position?

Belmont has always been about noise. When I was growing up it was 396 big blocks, 8 tracks and fights. We where from the other side of the tracks then.

I didn't know there was a strip club in town. I think they need a better publicist, and a few drug dealers kicking around. And putting naked women on The Hook will get good press here in this conservative little village of farceocrats.

Theres no doubt Charlottesville needs a strip club. I love how nobody would live in Belmont 15-20 years ago, and now the residents are demanding noise ordinances for their precious little neighborhood when the proximity to the downtown action, the resteraunts, and the music scene (all things that are going to produce a decent amount of noise) are what make Belmont attractive. Go live in Bremo Bluff if you can't stand the noise, Chickenhead.

Are you frickin kidding me.Just what this area needs is another "ordinance" your dog cant bark ,you cant park your car in front of your house(not without paying for a permit)Cant have a beer on your own property if someone else can see you.
Whats next with the city/county "GESTAPO", permits to use the john, permit to cut your grass cause the mowers to load .Talk about to much government.As for the "Belmontonians" you knew what was happening in that part of town you moved there to be cool so just be that"COOL" or move .And 55 decibel limit on sound ! How about a "0" decibel on politicians????????????? Ya know maybe a ti#*ie bar is what C-Ville needs . Them the local politicos would be just like the rest of the politicians in the county and have a place to hang out together. And i dont think "lap" dances make any noise do they?

please stay on topic-- moderator

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I get it. I get that you don't like the music so you think you have a right to shut it down. Just like the people who lived in Belmont who didn't like black people put clauses in their titles that forbid selling to one. It was legal then too. The law was on their side also.

If you don'r like the music and want it shut down then why can't I require you to turn off your air conditioner if it is over the same db level? Your a/c hum may keep me awake (it wouldn't because I am not that stressed out)but the point remains the same.

You csnnot sleep with the music yet you can sleep with other noises of the same db.. like the train rolling by for 10 minutes straight or your neighbors A/c or the diesel trucks making 5 am deliveries.

The argument for me is you say 75 is too high and others say 55 is too low.

I challenged you to record the noise from your bedroom so people can see how bad it is. The reason for that is that 55db is normal conversation. I think that there is more here than the noise;it is the changing neighborhood and you don't like it. I imagine that if their waitresses went to hooter style outfits you would squall then too because you might not like that.

I only busted on Belmont because anybody that has lived here knows what it was and is. The people of Belmont pulled the snob card. I just called the bluff.

I imagine that the city would be interested also. If you want support from people for your cause then prove your case.

It seems to me that this is about what you like and don't like not the db level.

Prove me wrong.

Actually Pound Foolish, you have shown yourself not to know Belmont at all, or who the people are who are upset. Do you really think you know more about the history of Belmont than people who have lived there 40-60 years?

People already followed up on your supposed challenge, and the police calls for the striptease disruption with drunks lying in the streets are already on record. Go look it up. That's why the city is going to pass an ordinance.

The diesel trucks aren't making deliveries at 5AM, either in the residential area or the NCC area. Do you think Jim Baldi is accepting produce at 5AM? Nope, he's snug asleep in bed.

Sure, if an AC unit is 60DBs and it's between 11PM and 7AM, and it's zoned R-1 you can have the owner cited if it bothers you. I suggest you ask the owner first as the residents have approached Baldi already but if they won't adjust you have the right to make a complaint. Do it. Go on and do it.

Your problem is that you, like everyone else upset that you can't ace a few hard facts. So you run down the neighborhood, you contradict yourselves over white noise items and try and make non-sequitor arguments.

No one is saying their can't be some loud music, they are saying not after 11PM. I think that is pretty accomoating because in R-1 zones, you can't be 75 dbs at any point in the day.

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"in R-1 zones, you can’t be 75 dbs at any point in the day"

Most lawn mowers weed wackers and chain saws are well above 75db.


"Sure, if an AC unit is 60 dbs and it’s between 11PM and 7AM, and it’s zoned R-1 you can have the owner cited if it bothers you"

.... so you are admitting that it is not the noise it is the fact that it comes from someone you don't like. I get it.

Under the law we all have equal protection. The city should be very careful prosecuting one person and ignoring every other source of noise. Fair is fair.

Maybe Mr Baldi should call the cops everytime you start your lawnmower.

This thread is getting old but I can't believe that I am the only one who would be interested in seeing some proof on youtube.

"Most lawn mowers weed wackers and chain saws are well above 75db."

Yes, and they are tools for temporary use. If they were running all the time, they would be cited. They also cannot be run before 7AM.

"so you are admitting that it is not the noise it is the fact that it comes from someone you don’t like."

No, I never said that at all. No one has said that, so you still don't get it. You remain in denial over the characteristics of noise, and how it is disruptive.

I have always admitted what ervery rational person admits and several people have on this thread; fans and AC units create what is known as white noise. Crashing noises, thrumming base that shakes the floor, is not white noise. It's disruptive noise.

White noise usually doesn't keep people up at night, loud base driven music does. It's just that simple.You can argue until you are blue in the face, but that is the excepted reality.

However, as I said, you ar welcome to have anyone you want cited if their AC unit is causing more than 55dbs of noise at their property line after 11PM at night. Do it. Go around and cite people. Personally, I know my AC unit does NOT make more than 55dbs of noise, because it is very modern. So you won't be citing me.

But knock yourself out, go down through Belmont this summer and see if you can get everyone in their supposed dumps cited.

Here is what's fair.

You lie in the bed you make. You want to make a lot of noise at night? You do it in your own neighborhood. You go out and build your own bars, start your own nightclubs. That's the life you want, you go for it.

But if you come into my neighborhood and disrupt peope with it, I will have you cited with the full force of the law. the law is 55dbs at 11PM, and 65 dbs in the day. I suggest you follow it.

Caesonia, stfu already....there's something seriously wrong with you if you can't get beyond a meaningless internet argument with a bunch of anonymous posters.

Oh, I strongly disagree Caesonia. Keeping the dialog going is the only way to get the city to do its part in finding a reasonable solution to the problems that poor zoning decisions have caused in Belmont.

Crysonia here is some proof, here is a link to a lennox ac brochure that claims to have the quietest units available "13 times quieter than the competition" the db ratings are 69-73 db. This is measured (according to other google research) at 4 feet, so with many a/c units in belmont about 8 feet from the line I would say the 55db threshold would most certainly be obtained.

here ya go...

You can call the police because the music bothers you but when they show up and the music stops and the db rating is still above 55 are the police going to ticket your neighbor? Maybe Bel Rio will turn the tables on you.

I would think that if police witenss any violation they would have to ticket everybody. They can't ticket me for being in a fire lane and not ticket the guy next to me just because you only complained about me.

Sorry I confused the moaner and the groaner...

My contention is that 55db is too low to enforce and the city would be better off buying you a lollypop.

Enough -

STFU? Thanks for showing what the limit is of your contribution to solving a problem. That would be why you are part of the problem.

Bel Rio isn't going to turn the tables on me because for the last time- listen REALLY HARD NOW - I no longer live in Belmont. You listen with filters, and your support of school vouchers and private schools tells me why.

When the music is turned off, the police can and do cite other obvious violations in front of them. I have seen them do it breaking up a frat party. Noise ordinances have a specific procedure to them so they can't just start walking around on private property taking readings because they can't unless there has been a specific complaint. The same applies to businesses by the way.

As for the AC units, yes, I have found ones quieter than the site you have listed. Sorry.

The 55db has been very effectively enforced in the city for a long time.

Oh yeah Pound Foolish -

By starting the name calling, you have lowered your pathetic argument even more. The only ones whoa re going to be crying are the self entitely noise makers who think they havea right to destroy someone else's neighborhood for a little bit of their nightly fun.

Pound Foolish, did you read how the ordinance is written? It isn't 55 dbs where the people are speaking or inside the restaurant.

It's 55dbs at the residential property lines not the business. I drove through the little food district, and there is no reason to suppose that someone speaking at 65 dbs will be measured above 55dbs by the time it gets to the property lines. But if you are heavy on the base, it will carry on because of it's nature.

As an engineer I wholeheartedly disagree with you over treating all noise the same because it isn't. Your sense of denial hat Caesonia mentions is what gets you in trouble there. Even Mr Breeden admits the different characteristics of base. I am also sure you are aware of little white noise machiens that are designed specifically to block out the random changing noises that are disruptive.

AC untis and fans make similar white noise so that dog won't hunt.

I get your desire to be fair which is why I won't let your link example pass. Lennox is a reputable company but you asked for a YouTube link with a live recording. You don't get to change the criteria mid-stride. I have one wall unit for a cabin that is incredibly quiet, but I have never measured the sound.

At the beginning of this thread I was pretty open minded about hw people need to behave if they want to live in an open sciety without ordinances. The responses since then and what I have learned has led me to believe that the real ordiancne should just read " No amplified sound," after 11 PM.

Then you can leave the sound level at 75dbs for the conversation, and have plenty of true accoustical music, but end the decibel game.


Every example you gave was a direct response to the rudeness already displayed by anyone unhappy over the proposed ordinance to those who did support it or Caesonia directly.None arrive at your profanity. You get the respect you receive.

The poster also has not posted 900 posts, so now you add ridiculous distortion to your own initial rude post.

I dropped a word in fast typing, engieers do that. I'll repeat what I said:

I suggest that your real issue with Caesonia is that she is a vociferous and tenacious poster. I don't read anger, I read annoyance at childish condescending attitude combined with passion.

I suggest that if the best you can add to this discussion is just to use profanity and extreme distortion so you can make a personal attacks that you take your own advice and shut it.

An interesting discussion. One that you would likely only have in C'ville. Truly fascinating.

I have to confess. In the 28 going on 29 years that I have lived in this area, I have rarely found the need or desire to visit Belmont. Now, in fear that my footsteps might awaken someone -- after all, people who work the night shift have to sleep, too -- I'll pass.

I am reasonably sure that much of the commentary bears false witness to the reality of the situation. It appears that Bel|Rio is both a lousy neighbor and an exciting, fun place. One thing is for sure, we have two groups of people deeply vested in telling the other side where it can go. My instincts tell me that there is some middle ground -- indeed, the City Council appears to have tried aiming for it -- nonetheless, the rancor will not end until one side has its way -- and that may be another 28 or 29 years.

After all, the Meadowcreek Parkway wasn't built in a day!