CBD noise rule changes music to their ears

"If you are moving into the city, you have to accept it will be noisy sometimes.''
"If you are moving into the city, you have to accept it will be noisy sometimes.''

Wollongong real estate agents have welcomed proposed planning rule amendments to better support live music venues against noise complaints.

Wollongong City Council's live music action plan, part of the city's cultural plan now on public exhibition, recommends a raft of modifications to development rules. They include installing noise-limiting measures in new developments, encouraging mediation between venues and residents affected by noise, and forming a clearer council and police process for addressing noise issues.

Real estate agents have also supported proposed changes to zoning documents, which would see Section 149 certificates - which inform new residents of issues related to the property such as land uses or heritage information - updated to show the property is in an area affected by live entertainment noise.

"If you are moving into the city, you have to accept it will be noisy sometimes and there will be live entertainment at night. That's city living," said Daniel Hastings, a director at MMJ Real Estate in Wollongong.

Placing the onus on new residents to accept noise from existing venues, rather than forcing venues to change their operations, has been a common theme in live music action plans around the country.

Live music taskforces in Sydney and Melbourne have been quick to point out residents should research what is in the area before moving to a new home, rather than asking existing venues to curb their activities.

"It falls back on residents, who should do their homework before moving into a new area," said Jarryd Higgins, an agent with Ray White Wollongong.

Complaints from residents in new developments in Sydney and Melbourne have been partially blamed for live music being forced out from iconic music venues, including The Annandale Hotel.

Mr Hastings said residents should not move into a city location if they were not prepared for the associated noise.

"Living near clubs or pubs can be a concern for some people, and venues do cop some grief, which is perhaps unfair on them," he said.

"Maybe it's ignorance from residents about where they live, or they change their mind about the noise, but there is no denying these complaints have an impact. People should be aware of what they are in for."


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