Members of the development community and businesses that currently have construction projects under way in Davidson County should be aware of a pending legislative proposal that would likely severely impact the ability to construct most projects in Nashville’s Mid-Town, Gulch, and downtown areas. Councilwoman Erica Gilmore has introduced an ordinance, BL2014-992
, that is pending before the Metropolitan Council. The bill has already passed the Council on first reading and will be pending before the Council for second reading on January 6th
and third and final reading on January 20th
If passed, this bill will extend the “noise level” restrictions currently in Section 16.44 of the Metropolitan Code to properties that are “adjacent” to residential buildings – even if the residential buildings are not in residential zones. Consequently, these noise level restrictions would be more applicable than ever before to parts of downtown, the Gulch, and Mid-Town. In practice, this means that noise levels that currently do not apply to many Nashville properties would extend to any property that is adjacent to a residential property. As a result, plans to work at night may have to be curtailed or eliminated if the noise levels on the site reach the residential property and exceed 70 decibels.
This is a new change that is being sought by current residents in these areas who are opposed to construction noise at night. While there are certainly competing views on this issue, the potential significant impact on construction and building schedules make the proposed ordinance an issue of which developers and property owners should be aware.
The opinions expressed in this bulletin are intended for general guidance only. They are not intended as recommendations for specific situations. As always, readers should consult a qualified attorney for specific legal guidance.