Nashville noise ordinance doesn’t protect Downtown residents

Noise ordinance

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – While there is a commercial noise ordinance in place in Nashville, much of Downtown and Midtown are not protected by the law.

The noise ordinance prohibits any noise from a commercial work site “in excess of seventy Db(A) as measured from a point as close as possible to the outside walls of any residential structure located within a residential zoning district…”

But even though people live there, many apartment and condominium buildings in downtown are zoned as mixed-use or commercial.

Bill Herbert, the Metro Zoning Administrator, says very little is residentially zoned there.

“The problem is, those ordinances only apply to residentially-zoned areas,” said Herbert. “And the areas around downtown are not zoned residentially.”

News 2 started looking into the issue when residents sent in videos of construction crews working at 3:30 in the morning.

Hundreds of people live in apartments and condos within two blocks of the work site. But since none of them are zoned residentially, the crews can work through the night.

Some people are losing sleep at night because of the noise.

A noise mitigation plan was implemented by the Metro Codes Department that requires developers to notify nearby residents of work schedules. The new policy also bans “blasting, jack hammering and hoe ramming” between 8 p.m. and 6 a.m.

But any project that was started before the April 6 implementation does not have to comply with the mitigation plan.

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