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Daily Real Estate News  |  August 23, 2007  |   Bustling Downtown Too Loud for Some Residents
Downtown St. Petersburg, Fla., formerly a ZIP code whose residents' median age was among the oldest in the country, has turned into a trendy boomtown full of restaurants, bars, coffee shops, and new residents.

It’s so lively that some of its long-time residents say they are fed up with the constant hum of activity.

Noise violations have shot up in the past few years. In 2004, the police department received 33 complaints about noise. In 2005, there were 81. Last year, 148 complaints were made.

The city’s noise ordinance is tough, prohibiting decibel levels louder than 75 during the day, 70 during early evening hours, and 60 decibels late at night and in the early morning. Even busy traffic can measure at 70 decibels, meaning drivers fleeing downtown late at night after an event are technically violating the ordinance.

Council member Earnest Williams, whose district includes part of downtown, said he regularly gets complaints from constituents about downtown's loudness. Businesses and residents need to find a compromise in most cases, he says. But “I don't think anybody should crank the music up so loud that windows shake and things like that."

Source: St. Petersburg Times, Cristina Silva (08/22/2007)

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