'We're close': City of Franklin, ROC Ventures hold emergency meeting to discuss decade of noise complaints
FRANKLIN, Wis. (CBS 58) -- After years of complaints about excessive noise coming from the Rock Sports Complex in Franklin, the developer and the city both say they're on the path to fixing the problems.
Friday afternoon, Sept. 22, city officials met with representatives of ROC Ventures to begin mitigating the noise issues. Both sides say the meeting was positive and productive, though there are still several things they disagree on.
The mayor and the CEO say they're moving forward with plans to quiet the noise.
ROC Ventures Owner & CEO Michael Zimmerman said, "We don't agree on everything yet."
Franklin Mayor John Nelson added, "But we're close. I feel good. I believe we came to some common ground. I know we still have some challenges to look forward to."
There's light at the end of the tunnel for the years-long saga.
After a decade of noise complaints from neighbors near the complex, Nelson and Zimmerman are working on a solution.
Zimmerman said, "I think the stadium is the one piece we haven't quite figured out yet."
Zimmerman said the original land purchase agreement allowed the complex to emit sound up to 79 decibels. He said they have not violated that level.
In the short-term, Zimmerman said, "If we do anything within the stadium, we've decided to turn down the music, turn in the speakers."
Zimmerman said they'll analyze different events and come up with a more sophisticated plan that's what's currently in place.
Nelson said, "We want an aggressive timeline with tangible results."
Sound management companies will first study the issue. Nelson said, "Is it projecting too far west? Is it projecting too far north? And what are the simple fixes and what are the more complex fixes? But there will be fixes."
When we asked Nelson if those fixes will cost money, he said, "I believe everything costs money." But we then asked if it will cost the city, he said, "No."
Zimmerman is also pursuing a permanent fix. "One of the solutions we talked about was acoustic fencing, but again, we'll have to talk to the neighbors and see how they feel about that."
Acoustic fencing is a literal fence with material that absorbs sound. That option could trigger a funding issue down the road.
Nelson said, "There's a cost there. I don't believe at this point we're in a cost-sharing conversation."
Nelson and Zimmerman will meet again Monday.
They hope to circulate some firmer plans to neighbors shortly afterwards, and then expect to present those plans at the next Common Council meeting on October 3.