We’ve caught up on back posts, and are ready to roll for this season. New restrictions are in effect, but early indications are not encouraging. We’re keeping open minds and hoping for the best.
We know you’re inspired to play along as we track concerts this year. Make it easy—download the 2015 schedule pdf here.
The new restrictions that went into effect in January include the following provisions:
- Noise restrictions have only been lowered by 2 dB (from 125 to 123 dB), but now apply throughout the concert. (In 2014 noise restrictions only applied to the last 30 mins of the concert.)
- Ending times have been significantly improved, weekdays ending at 11:45 and weekends ending at 12:30. (2014 weekdays ending at 12:30 and weekends ending at 1:30 AM)
- There will be a hotline for residents to report noise issues as they happen. No need to call 911 or anybody else. [Hope to hear about this soon.]
- Violations can result in performers exclusion from Red Rocks.
- More detail studies to fine tune the noise restrictions for 2016.
- Weather station to be added to the study.
Morrison’s noise consultant reviewed Denver’s data and reported that if the 2015 restrictions had applied in 2014:
There would have been a total of 368 noise level violations, and 23 ending time violations, resulting in a total of $3,910,000 in fines.
This is a clue that tells us how bad the noise was last year, but not why. Now we know that the actual data show performers were regularly hitting Low Frequency (dB1) levels greater than 130 BEFORE the restrictions went into effect (only during the last half hour). Many concerts reached peak and ended before they were even covered by the 2014 restrictions. For example the data show Bassnectar peaked at 138 dB1 before ending at 11:45 on a weekend.
Added later: Here’s Westword’s summary of the new regulations.
Next week, there will be a public meeting to hear what Denver has decided to do for the 2015 concert season. Plan to attend to hear all about it and share any concerns you may have.
In mid-December, we sent a letter to Commissioner Tighe on behalf of Save Red Rocks outlining our concerns and recommendations.
Our December 2014 letter to Commissioner Tighe, pdf opens in new window
Background reading on recent developments (pdfs open in new windows):
To assess how the new restrictions at Red Rocks Amphitheatre stack up in comparison to other venues, our volunteers have tried to collect information on similar outdoor concert locations. Although not all these data are exactly comparable (see below), here’s a general overview of the situation:
The decibel level and resulting effects depend on where the sound is measured. We were unable to obtain exact locations of measurements for most of these sites. Note that at Red Rocks and Fiddler’s Green, sound levels are measured at the front of house mix location, inside the venue. Most regulations (e.g., county and state limits) set levels at the receiving site, that is, your property boundary. Levels for Red Rocks are based on the assumption that sound levels will be 50 dB lower at the park boundary than they are in the Amphitheater itself.
However, the new restrictions place NO LIMIT on decibel level before midnight (or 1 AM weekends), and the end times cited above are not firm end times, but “curfews.” Beginning one half-hour after the curfew, penalties may be assessed for violations. Read the full restrictions here.
In comparison, at Fiddler’s Green:
All events are required to end at 10:45 pm, Mon-Thurs, and 11:00 pm Fri-Sun. with NO EXCEPTIONS. Official event time is kept on the Extech sound monitoring computer, and curfew is strictly enforced by the Tri-County Health Depart.
A full house at last night’s Town Board meeting heard the report from the Town’s noise consultants, who reviewed and provided recommendations related to Denver’s proposed (and implemented) noise regulations for Red Rocks.
Denver Post reporter Josie Klemaier filed this report after the meeting.
Here’s the report from CBS 4 News.
Here’s what Denver is implementing. What do YOU think?