Avoiding an immediate revocation process, the Larsa Event Center, located on E. Monte Vista Ave., has been given an extended trial period by the Stanislaus County Planning Commission to resolve its impacts on nearby neighborhoods, after multiple noise complaints from area residents and unpermitted structures at the site put the center’s Conditional Use Permit in jeopardy .
To help mitigate the excessive noise levels that prompted over 40 noise disturbance calls to the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department since 2009, the owners of Larsa Event Center began taking various steps to reduce noise coming from the site during the initial six month period provided by the Stanislaus County Planning Commission in November 2013 to be in compliance with the county’s Conditions of Approval and noise laws. During this time, the event center was also ordered by the commission to demonstrate “good faith efforts towards resolving the church’s impacts on the neighborhood” to further avoid having its Conditional Use Permit revoked.
After installing a noise monitoring system that measures decibel levels while music is playing and signals when the music has become too loud, filling the facility’s walls with additional insulation material, and lowering bass levels within the event center’s sound system, the event center underwent a noise assessment conducted by acoustics consultant group J.C. Brennan & Associates.
Although the assessment confirmed that, due to the new improvements, noise levels at Larsa during an event were within compliance of the county’s noise ordinance and not audible beyond 200 feet, nearby residents attending the recent county Planning Commission meeting claimed that the assessment was not an accurate representation of the noise overflow from Larsa Event Center, as it was conducted during the initial six month period beginning in November – a time of year that sees fewer events than the center’s busy summer months.
Taking these concerns into account, the Stanislaus County Planning Commission voted to continue monitoring the noise levels at Larsa Event Center for an additional six months to better determine whether the new noise monitoring system and improvements made within the facility will result in a satisfactory difference in noise levels for nearby residents during the event center’s months with heightened activity.
According to Katie Quintero of the Turlock Planning Department, the extended trial period could be cut short should the event center receive three verified complaints for excessive noise levels before September – an outcome that would violate the county’s conditions and potentially lead to a full hearing by the Stanislaus County Planning Commission to consider revoking the center’s use permit.