Weather increases sound levels at ACL Fest

Print
Email
|

by JADE MINGUS / KVUE NEWS and Photojournalist ERIN COKER

Bio | Email | Follow: @JadeM_KVUE

kvue.com

Posted on October 7, 2013 at 6:23 PM

Updated Monday, Oct 7 at 6:40 PM

AUSTIN -- With the second weekend of the Austin City Limits Music Festival coming up, some nearby residents want the volume down a notch.

Lois Stewart has lived in a neighborhood off South Lamar for 10 years, but she says this year's ACL is the loudest she's ever heard.

"I think they turned it way up," said Stewart. 

The City of Austin received more than 100 noise complaints to 311 citywide during the first ACL weekend. The City has not calculated complaints made to 911.

"I thought some young kid had pulled up with his car radio blasting with a sub-woofer. My whole house was vibrating it was so loud," said Stewart. 

Austin police investigated noise complaints this weekend using sound meters to check the levels on the perimeter of Zilker Park. According to state and city law, the levels could not hit 85 decibels. Officers say the highest levels they found hit 84 decibels. 

Police say no rules were broken, but officers say the weather played a part.

"You could tell with the naked ear a difference from before the cold front to that colder, drier air," said Austin Police Department Sgt. Jeff Crawford. "It makes a difference the way sound travels."

ACL organizers say the volume levels did not change this year.

"It's really important to our relationship with the city and our relationship with the neighborhoods. We try to stay in compliance with everything and be as respectful as possible," said ACL Festival Marketing Manager Lindsay Hoffman.

ACL organizers C3 Presents acknowledged the sound issue and released this statement:

 

"Fluctuating atmospheric conditions, including cold weather and high winds, greatly influenced the distance the sound carried the last two nights of the festival. Continuous adjustments were made throughout the weekend to compensate for these conditions, as well as responding to calls made into the festival neighborhood hotline and 311. Our plan is to test sound levels at the property line this week before the festival begins, set levels based on forecasted weather, and realign sound equipment."
 
Still, Stewart says she's worried about a second, noisy ACL weekend.
 
"I moved to Austin in 1979, and I love the music scene. I think it's a great venue and good for the Austin economy. It's great for young people to go, but they don't need it that loud," Stewart said.
 
Austin police say they will be back out during ACL's second weekend to test sound levels.
 

 

Print
Email
|