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The Lake News Online
  • Paradise Restaurant begins sound deadening

  • A lot line relocation and rezoning to give a lakefront restaurant and bar more space to install acoustic sound deadening panels was recommended by the Camden County Planning Commission Wednesday evening.
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  • A lot line relocation and rezoning to give a lakefront restaurant and bar more space to install acoustic sound deadening panels was recommended by the Camden County Planning Commission Wednesday evening.
    Paradise Tropical Restaurant & Bar was the subject of controversy over the summer as several neighboring residents fought to have outdoor music at the site shut down as the owner, Tucker Investments, sought a conditional use permit to continue the music.
    After first denying the CUP, the commission reversed itself in an appeal case brought by George Tucker.
    CUP stipulations included the construction of acoustic deadening treatments, limited hours for outdoor music and a "best effort" by management and staff to limit noise and rowdiness of customers.
    The final plat for the lot line relocation added land from an adjacent single family residential parcel also owned by Tucker to the bar's property.
    Part of the new sound abatement structure will be located on this strip of land. It is also needed to provide the required 20-foot side setback to the property line.
    The small section of land dedicated to the business has to be rezoned to B-2 general commercial.
    Camden County P&Z Administrator Don Hathaway called the case an "academic rezoning" since the greater case of the CUP had already been approved in June.
    No opposition to the case was present at the hearing Dec. 18, though the commission did receive one letter of opposition.
    Due to the scrutiny of the case in the past, the commission decided there was no need to table the case for a site visit. It was moved to old business and then approved.
    The property is identified on the county's future development map as Suburban Neighborhood.
    The county commission will hold its next P&Z public hearing and vote next month on Jan. 16.
    In the meantime, installation of the sound abatement structure will likely soon get underway as Tucker may now get an at-risk construction permit.
    He said construction would begin right after the new year.
    Paradise was allowed to continue outdoor music through the past summer season, but in the CUP agreement, the acoustic deadening measures are required to be completed prior to the bar's spring opening.
    According to a letter from Tucker's architect, the new two-story sound deadening wall will have acoustic panels with a noise reduction coefficient of at least 0.75 mounted on the side walls to reduce the reflective properties of the wall. The ceiling of the structure will be lined with a suspended acoustic ceiling tile with a noise reduction coefficient of at least 0.65.
    Tucker applied for the CUP last summer after complaints about the bar's outdoor music had resulted in notices of violation of the Lake District Unified Land Use Code in 2010 and 2012.
    Page 2 of 2 - Paradise is located on property zoned B-1 commercial. Outdoor music is not a permitted use in B-1 zoning under the code, but is possible as a conditional use.
    An application was made by Tucker Investments to rezone 5-plus acres at the site from R-1 single family residential to B-2 general commercial in 2007, but the application was revised, removing a five acre second tier lot.
    The revised application sought to rezone about 1/2 acre adjacent to the existing restaurant from R-1 to B-2 in order to expand. Opposition at the Nov. 20, 2007 hearing objected to B-2 zoning due to concerns about loud noise. B-2 zoning then allowed outdoor music as a permitted use.
    After discussion with commissioners at the time, the application was again revised — this time to lower the zoning request to B-1, which was approved. Both the staff report and the minutes of the hearing reflected that B-1 precludes dancing or live entertainment unless a CUP was also approved.
    A substantial renovation and expansion followed the case after which the complaints of loud outdoor music from neighboring residents began.
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