READER’S EDITORIAL: FLETCHER HILLS RESIDENTS CONCERNED ABOUT BREWERY AND NOISE

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By Susan Brinchman

March 31, 2016 (La Mesa) - Depot Springs Beer Company is apparently planning an outdoor music venue and brewery/restaurant in Fletcher Hills, La Mesa, at Dallas St and Fletcher Parkway. According to promotional literature, the La Mesa Planning Commission appears to have recently approved an amphitheater with live (outdoor) music until midnight, daily. The promotional literature further portrays this brewery and plan as being "family-friendly," but some nearby residents are upset.

Many in this western Fletcher Hills La Mesa residential neighborhood, where working people and their children would like to enjoy their properties, peace, and sleep, are very concerned. Most neighbors I spoke to had never heard of this plan, a few had heard of it in only the past few days, and none had heard of the part about live outdoor music until midnight. They were shocked and felt it should not be located in a residential neighborhood. Some are concerned it will place more alcohol-impaired drinkers behind the wheel in our neighborhood, where school children cross Fletcher Parkway, in addition to being upset at the idea of the noise factor. We encourage all La Mesa residents, not only those in Fletcher Hills, to contact the City Council and Mayor Arapostathis to tell them loud and clear that we want to preserve La Mesa as a town friendly to its residents, where peace, quiet, and safe streets are a priority and property values are preserved. The Planning Commission is also responsible for this alleged approval, and should be audited to find out why.

Arapostathis, Mark

Mayor

Email

619.667.1100

Baber, Bill

Vice Mayor

Email

619.667.1106

Alessio, Kristine C.

Councilmember

Email

619.667.1106

McWhirter, Guy

Councilmember

Email

619.667.1106

Sterling, Ruth

Councilmember

Email

619.667.1106

 

The views in this editorial reflect the views of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of East County Magazine. To submit an editorial for consideration, contact editor@eastcountymagazine.org

See East County Magazine’s past coverage on this, including our interview with Depot Springs’ owner here on changes he has made to address community concerns:  http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/depot-springs-beer-company-owner-bubbles-forth  and a town hall meeting held earlier where residents raised some concerns: http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/la-mesa-town-hall-reveals-community-unrest-brewing-over-beer-and-outdoor-music-venue

 

Comments

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Noise and parking issues

A venue for 900 people in a place where there is already very little parking is absurd. Between Souplantation and Michael's, as well as the other businesses, one must circle around endlessly. So the parking will end up on nearby streets. Re: the noise, Chris Jacobs, Senior Planning Commissioner for the city of La Mesa said that the city accepted the owner's noise study and when asked, admitted that the city did not conduct one of its own. How a noise study could prove that rock bands with an open air venue will not disturb the neighborhood, till midnight, is highly questionable. The city of La Mesa has been very strict in the past with their approvals for homeowners, why are they rolling over and granting every request of this business owner? What is in it for the city? They are not allowed to reduce property values, according to every town's charter. But in fact, this will accomplish that. People have the right to sleep and enjoy their properties. This is not about eating in restaurants but about open air bands that will disturb the neighborhood, surely right around the venue in multiple ways. Cut out the open air band idea and figure out the parking. The city should represent the homeowners not the businesses.

This is a brewery

There will be a major emphasis in this place on selling beer, as it is a brewery where the beer is made. To portray this venue as only "a restaurant" is misleading, in my opinion. It could add impaired drivers, by the hundreds, I predict, to the already dangerous Fletcher Parkway. That is, unless drivers are not allowed to drink - but I can't see that happening.

worth noting...

There was a bar on the site before that's closed (Parkway Bar) and also a Thai restaurant that closed (not sure if it sold alcohol, too).  It wasn't a booze-free zone, though crowds could be larger here.  A good thing is the owner is actively encouraging people to take public transit, offering discounts for those who do, which would cut down on parking and impaired driver issues.

I'd be interested to hear from law enforcement in neighboring cities as to whether there has been any measurable increase in accidents or impaired driver incidents related to breweries. Or for that matter, in La Mesa which already has two breweries in other locations, albeit not near a school.

Due diligence

Folks should read the two articles written on this web site (and linked to at the bottom of this editorial) so that they have a better idea of what is going on before contacting the city. The owner addressed the noise abatement. Having places people want to walk to generally improves property values. That's why it costs more to live in places like Hillcrest, North Park, etc. I still think parking will be an issue, but I welcome having another place to eat in La Mesa that's not a generic food chain, and especially one that is family friendly.