After-Dark Ideats Silenced; Whose Plaza Is It?

Jay Dockendorf File Photo.For the tenth straight year, Bill Saunders wants to fill a downtown plaza with go-go dancers, fire spinners, and indie rockers playing under the stars. But after objections from a new residential high-rise next door, the city has ordered the Ideat Village arts fest to pull the plug at 7:45 p.m.

Which raises the question: What’s a downtown plaza for?

This year marks the tenth anniversary of Ideat Village, the June alternative arts festival.  Ideat Village brings together visual and performing artists and emerging rock bands in a free-wheeling celebration of underground art and music. It’s the scrappy DIY counterpart to the more polished and sprawling International Festival of Arts and Ideas.

For the past several years, Ideat Village has been held over two June weeks in the Pitkin Plaza on Orange Street between Court and Chapel streets. It also uses the Millenium Plaza behind City Hall.

When organizers Bill Saunders and Nancy Shea put in for their permits to use the plaza this year, they encountered opposition from a large new neighbor that’s sprung up since last year’s festival: 360 State, the new fuel cell-powered 32-story 500-apartment tower that fronts on the plaza. Lots of people now live right on the plaza, in a former downtown dead zone that has now become a public open-space centerpiece of new urbanist revival, featuring not just 360 State but two communal gathering spots, Devil’s Gear Bike Shop and Bru Cafe.

The controversy of Ideat Village reflects new questions about public space-sharing that can emerge from the soil of downtown revival. Downtown dwellers want some quiet at night. A vibrant downtown alternative-arts scene thrives after dark.

“Obviously we’re very supportive of the arts in New Haven but there is a problem in terms of peace and quiet for our tenants,” said Bruce Becker, the developer behind 360 State. “So the official position 360 State is to oppose the amplified music at Pitkin Plaza.”

In response to requests from 360 State and complaints from other neighbors concerned about noise, the city put the new limit on Ideat Village’s permits this year allowing no amplification after 7:45 p.m.

Jay Dockendorf File Photo.Saunders said that will be a devastating blow to the festival, which he said sees most of its traffic after 7:30 p.m. He said he’ll have to cancel many of the headlining performances, like the Ideat Village fashion event, the New Haven Advocate’s circus show, and a slew of indie rock bands’ performances. Click here for a list of the cancellations.

Jennifer Pugh, the city’s deputy chief administrative officer, presented the new permit restrictions as part of an evolving process of trying to accommodate the various needs of downtown businesses, residents, and festivals. She said if complaints continue, the festival may have to move to a new venue next year.

The current conflict is in some way the product of city success, Pugh said. More and more people are moving downtown, drawn in part by a vibrant street life that includes alternative art shows like Ideat Village.

In the New Urbanist vision, the downtown would develop into a more livable, walkable area of dense mixed uses, with a blend of residents, businesses, and evening entertainment. How do plazas fit into that vision? What if the people drawn by the convenience and excitement of downtown life rebel against the underground art festival that may have helped bring them there? Who owns the space?

A Decade Of Ideats

Thomas MacMillan File Photo.Ten years ago, Ideat Village began as a three-day festival in the plaza on Temple Street, Saunders said. Over time it evolved into a two week festival held at Temple and Pitkin and Millenium Plaza, behind City Hall.

After the second year, the city put in new guidelines prohibiting amplified music after 8 p.m. But those guidelines were never enforced and never mentioned again, Saunders said. “We’ve always had amplified music up until 10 o’clock,” Saunders said. “We got our permits like clockwork.”

Then last year, the city consolidated the festival to Pitkin Plaza only. And this year, the guidelines resurfaced, Saunders said.

After he put in the permit application this year, the city convened a meeting on May 16 in the plaza, with Saunders, Shea, 360 State, the Devil’s Gear Bike Shop (which fronts on the plaza), and the Town Green Special Services District (which signs off on the permits). Saunders and the others discussed how the festival would use the plaza but came to no conclusions, Saunders said.

Shortly afterwards, according to Pugh, 360 State representatives came back with their verdict on the festival: We don’t want it to happen at all.

“That’s not an option,” said Pugh. The event has been going on for 10 years; “it’s not for us to say it can’t happen.” The city’s task was then to find a way to ensure the festival occurs in way that minimizes problems for neighbors, she said. That led to the 7:45 p.m. deadline for amplified sound.

Pugh described the deadline as merely 15 minutes earlier than the longstanding no-amplification deadline of 8 p.m., which she said has always been in effect for the festival.

The permit regulations have been “sort of a work in progress,” Pugh said. They’ve evolved to respond to the needs of the festival and complaints of neighbors, she said

The festival’s noise level has been a longstanding complaint, she said. Even in the early years in Temple Plaza, the festival had to coordinate with the Shubert Theater to make sure noise from the festival didn’t bleed through the back wall of the theater, Pugh said. As more people moved into condominiums near Temple Plaza, the noise complaints increased, Pugh said.

In Pitkin Plaza, those complaints have continued in recent years, Pugh said. “Last year the music was very loud. One guy [living on Court Street] said he couldn’t hear his TV.”

The evening performances are the loudest, Pugh said. “Their music builds in a crescendo. For the people surrounding the plaza, it’s kind of unbearable.”

Pugh acknowledged that Ideat Village helps make New Haven an exciting destination for people. “Certainly events like this are to the benefit of downtown,” she said.

The challenge now is to balance the needs of everybody involved, she said. “All parties need to say, ‘I’ll give a little.’ If this year is successful and the noise is not outrageous, then next year is not so hard.”

Pugh said 360 State is reacting to the festival without first experiencing it. “Everybody needs to take a deep breath, do this year’s event,” and then reassess, she said.

“If we get a lot of complaints,” she said, “then maybe we need to look at another place.”

Contributed Photo.“This is a downtown festival, and there are no more downtown spaces, honey,” Saunders said on the question of moving to a new location.

He said the city’s 7:45 p.m. deadline does not represent a fair middle ground. “It’s not a compromise at all.”

If people move to a city, they should expect to be near public spaces where there will be activity, he said. If there are problems, invoking the city’s noise ordinance is the appropriate way to deal with them, not by forever adjusting permit regulations, Saunders said.

Devil’s Advocate For Compromise

Matt Feiner, owner of the Devil’s Gear bike shop, said all of his worries were addressed by the May 16 meeting. “Our only concerns were that we’d have unobstructed use of the plaza.” The shop uses the plaza as a test-ride area. Feiner said he’s satisfied that the positioning of the Ideat Village stage will be satisfactory.

As for noise, Feiner said it doesn’t affect him because the store will be closed in the evenings. He said, however, that he can see that it could be a problem for others. “I’m sure it’s keeping people up.”

“We support stuff happening in Pitkin Plaza,” Feiner said. “I think the [7:45 p.m] restriction is a little heavy-handed. I think there’s a middle ground.”

“I’m hoping something can be worked out,” he said. “Ideat Village only benefits the city.”

Feiner suggested 9 p.m. might be a more reasonable time to shut down the amps.

Curtis Packer, who runs Pitkin Plaza’s Bru Cafe, wrote a May 31 letter of support for an amplified Ideat Village. “The festival is fun, responsible and economically beneficial,” he wrote.

Numerous concerts have taken place until 10 p.m. and beyond in the plaza, Packer noted. The 7:45 p.m. deadline is arbitrary and goes against the goal of making the plaza a place for people to enjoy events, he wrote. “It is self-evident that the loss of these events from Pitkin Plaza will be detrimental to the local arts and business economy.”

 

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Comments

posted by: streever on June 2, 2011  8:16am

What?
The city allows ONE taxpayer to wield absolute power over a public space?

Where the *%&@ do we live? Soviet Russia?

Why is the City of New Haven intent on dragging us into a facsimile of suburban living—while doing NOTHING to prevent the really serious negatives of urban living—and providing none of the benefits of suburban living?

It is pretty clear that the City is not approaching decision making from either a transparent or a data-driven direction.

A brief chronology:
- Ideat Village is allowed to operate for a decade
- Ideat Village applies for a permit, in MARCH
- One powerful taxpayer says nay
- 2 weeks before the Festival, the City says, “No way”

I’m sorry, but would it really hurt 360 to allow the ONE NIGHT of Ideat Village?

Does the noise from Arts&Ideas;, New Haven Jazz, New Haven Orchestra, and other events—all of which go past 7:30—not bother the many people who live around the green?

Why are they being treated so differently?

(and really, what the heck is wrong with our city officials that they have such a weak spleen? Are you guys afraid that 360 will leave?)

posted by: Shawn on June 2, 2011  8:20am

Aren’t festivals like this what living downtown is all about. If the residents of 360 State wish for peace & quiet they should not live DOWNTOWN. Further, the music is only going to 10pm which is very reasonable. Since the building is a rental the tenants can easily move to a quieter suburb if they choose. Lets support vibrancy in our city!

posted by: Uncle Egg on June 2, 2011  8:38am

If Becker’s tenants complain about the noise, then he should apologize to them directly for failing to warn them that on a few days a year, the public space adjacent to his monstrosity is used for performances that might slightly inconvenience them for a short while.

I do not see why the rest of the city should pay for Becker’s failure to adequately disclose this to his tenants. He, after all, is the one who chose to locate his apartment building next to an existing public space that had already been used for this purpose for several years running.

Ideat Village is a public use of a public space, in keeping with the city’s noise control ordinance. If Becker’s tenants don’t like it, they are free to move elsewhere.

posted by: Anon on June 2, 2011  8:42am

Loud music and exhibitionistic women dressed as tarts is not original. Being, as it is, ordinary tripe plucked from the commercial bowels of Times Square and Las Vegas, it is a dubious thing to claim as “art.” It is not transformational, nor does it lead to a heightened perception of a particular place and time. Instead of throwing rancid old cheesecake around, Saunders needs to be creative and come up with an idea that responds to this changed location. If he can’t let go of this prosaic gimmick, take it to Stage Door Johnny’s.

posted by: meredith on June 2, 2011  8:46am

For as long as I have been living here this time (came back in 1997), I’ve experienced the City of New Haven putting every possible roadblock in front of live music happening within the city limits.  I have watched people make active attempts to bring exciting new venues for live performance to downtown, only to end up giving up in disgust.  I don’t know what City Hall has against live music, but sometimes I feel like I’m living in the movie “Footloose”.

As Cliff Furnald just eloquently stated while discussing this subject on his show on WPKN, if you move to a place like 360 State to experience the vibrancy of downtown living, you’ve got to expect and prepare to live with a little vibrancy.  If you can’t handle the noise of the city, don’t live in the city.  It’s as simple as that.

posted by: William Kurtz on June 2, 2011  8:52am

You have to admire the chutzpah of developers making tons of money off the expensive rents that go hand-in-hand with living in the vibrant downtown that Bill Saunders has been contributing to for more than a decade now telling him and Ideat Village to go somewhere else. 

10:00 seems like a perfectly reasonable time for music to end.

posted by: HewNaven?? on June 2, 2011  8:53am

Can anyone who lives downtown legitimately complain about noise? Seems like they must have known what they were getting into before they moved in. I guess it’s the type of noise they’re worried about (or the type of people). Either way, they’ll have to learn to accept us Ideats, or move back to where they came from. The Ideats have been here longer, and there’s more of us!

P.S. Why is anyone living downtown worried about watching T.V.? There’s a whole city out there. Enjoy it!

“In Pitkin Plaza, those complaints have continued in recent years, Pugh said. “Last year the music was very loud. One guy [living on Court Street] said he couldn’t hear his TV.”

posted by: Pedro Soto on June 2, 2011  9:06am

This ‘compromise’ does seem to have been approached with an excess amount of caution.

Yes, Ideat can be loud, and if I were settling in after a long day, I might be a little miffed.

But that being said, it’s also summertime in New Haven. There are huge concerts on the green, and thousands of people downtown at night!

A possible compromise—

Might it be possible to close off the Grand Avenue Bridge in the evenings and use the large still-vacant plaza for the concerts? Closing off streets, especially at the last minute I know is pricey, but that would be a perfect spot for a still unused space.

The unused AT&T parking lot on state might also be an option. I know that power might be an issue, as I don’t know where IDEAT plugs into to get their power, or if they use a generator.

In any case, I hope a compromise can be floated that keeps this great festival going.

posted by: Billy on June 2, 2011  9:07am

I agree with the first two people who have commented.  This is undue influence being wielded against the people of the city into which the 360 State folks moved.  Ideat Village has been a mainstay of culture and art in the city for decade.  In their first year in the city, the 360 State people flex their muscles and vote to limit the arts and the fun of the people of New Haven.  That is the very definition of being a lousy neighbor.  And, who in city government is having their marionette strings pulled by the 360 State folks?

posted by: Robert Zott on June 2, 2011  9:11am

The Ideat Village Festival is the best part of living in downtown New Haven—and I live on Court Street, right behind Pitkin Plaza! If the residents of 360 State Street don’t want any noise: MOVE TO THE ‘BURBS! I’m amazed that The Devil’s Gear would be concerned about losing their precious “test ride area;” what about gaining hundreds of people gathered right in front of you shop who never knew about your obscure location??? Think, people!

posted by: streever on June 2, 2011  9:24am

I have to ask too, where is Director Bob Levine and the City when the residents who live around College Woods are assaulted by extremely violent, loud, racy rap music on a weekly basis?

Why are the applicants who put on DJ shows with full amplification allowed to come back?
Why are they not ticketed?
Why are they allowed to have 3-4 VANS parked in College Woods, after illegally driving into the park?

Where is the consistency in the cities decision-making progress?

posted by: Anderson Scooper on June 2, 2011  9:28am

If the City and Town Green SSD are so worried about noise bothering downtown residents, they should first crack down on the “straight-pipe” motorcycles which are the worst nuisance.

And what about Geronimo’s “Salsa Night”, which every Sunday night until 10pm, is somehow permitted to blast outdoor amplified music at literally hundreds of downtown apartments. Salsa Night’s bass line is un-godly, rattling windows and walls even a full block away. But despite numerous complaints, no action has been taken against the yuppie oasis.

Yet instead the powers that be take a huge whack at Saunders, his Ideats and ten years of controlled mayhem?

Anyway, I wouldn’t give Becker any standing until after he attends his first festival. Who knows, maybe his tenants might enjoy a little counter-culture, two weeks out of the year? (my guess is you’d see a lot of them in attendance, smiling along….)

fwiw. My version of New Haven needs a few more Saunders!

posted by: streever on June 2, 2011  9:29am

Anon:
Typically, I don’t like the music played at Ideat Village. I actually prefer the NHSO, and love symphony on the green. With that said, can you explain why Ideat Village’s burlesque revival is less original than NHSO—one of the nations oldest orchestras—playing some of the oldest written music in the western world?

Furthermore, do you honestly believe that your definition of “artistic and creative merit” should determine who has rights to public spaces? Just because it isn’t your idea of a good time (or mine honestly) doesn’t mean it isn’t valid.

posted by: Bruce Crowder on June 2, 2011  9:31am

This is absurd!  It would be sheer stupidity to kill the festival over the objections of a single developer.  The city gets noise complaints about garbage trucks too.  Sorry, but certain things simply come along with the urban lifestyle.  If you hate art and like 365 days and nights of peace and quiet, move out to the woods.

Ideat Village is one of the best, most exciting arts events that New Haven has to offer—despite the city’s continual efforts to destroy it. It enriches the city. Unlike “other” summer arts festivals, it costs the taxpayers NOTHING and offers an extensive bill of very talented homegrown artists.  If New Haven is to be considered an arts center, it needs to cultivate and support art from WITHIN.

posted by: Steve B on June 2, 2011  9:37am

Where can I file an ugliness complaint against 360 State? Perhaps the city can invoke some kind of restriction so I don’t have to look at that hideous excrement of a building after 7:45pm.

posted by: MR on June 2, 2011  9:57am

This reminds me of the story of the folks who moved into a gentrifying area of Harlem that came with a long-established park drum circle:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/06/nyregion/06drummers.html

Events like Ideat Village are part of what makes downtown New Haven such a hip, fab place to live, instead of a suburban recreational park.  (Similar apartments would rent for much less in quieter areas.)

posted by: Anon on June 2, 2011  10:10am

Steve B - I’m all with you on wishing we didn’t have to look at 360 State after 7:45 PM. If Saunders could create a way that we didn’t have to see the building starting at 7:45 AM and continuing to 7:45 AM the next day, every day, I’d nominate him for a MacArthur Fellowship for artistic achievement and public service.

posted by: Shaggy Bob on June 2, 2011  10:28am

Are you kidding me. Since when did the “tenants” of 360 State start running the city, oh yeah when they got the the waiver of ALL BUILDING PERMIT FEES. ( pm would have been a realistic and doable compromise. Who do these people think they are. The next thing they’ll want is the trains to stop running and the bus schedules changed- oh and can the the highway be quiter. YOU LIVE DOWNTOWN !!!!
\I am disgusted with the politics in this town.

posted by: Bru Cafe on June 2, 2011  10:35am

Before, during and after the construction of 360 State there were several discussions with Mr. Becker and his staff regarding use of Pitkin Plaza for (a) music events (b) festivals and (3) other uses ie: farmers market etc.

Never once did anyone pose any opposition to any of these uses and in fact, Mr. Becker himself told me just two weeks ago that he would NOT oppose concerts in the plaza. So what gives?

One other small point. Residents living in 360 State Street have expressed to Bru their interest in performing in the plaza, so if the residents are not opposed then who really is?

Lastly, although Bru Cafe abuts Pitkin Plaza and is the longest termed occupant on the plaza, Town Green Special Services failed to invite Bru Cafe to attend the meeting held between 360 State, Devils Gear and Ideat Village organizers.

posted by: Steve B on June 2, 2011  10:35am

Anon-

Perhaps we could just shield 360 State from view during overnight hours as a trial run, and if the result is as positive as many of us feel it would, we could extend it to a 24-hour ban on having to look at 360 State.

Any local artists or craftspeople working on a hideous-generic-skyscraper-cloaking-device care to show it off at Ideat Village?

posted by: Tony Pellegrino on June 2, 2011  10:47am

One guy complains he can’t hear his TV——so we shut down an entire festival?  What is wrong with this picture? I’ve lived downtown for 5 years now.  I expect it to be loud sometimes.  At least it will be an improvement from the cars screaming down state st with stereos pounding or sirens blaring. This is exactly the reason why I wouldn’t move to 360 state!  I’m sure most of the 360 state residents would enjoy something a little different outside their building.  As far as appeasing the owners of 360 state…do you think they are going to up and leave?!?!

posted by: meta on June 2, 2011  11:19am

I sense a peaceful display of civil disobedience coming on.. Should we plan a protest? Perhaps it can coincide with the day in question and we have a sit-in (with music).

posted by: Blame the Mayor on June 2, 2011  11:35am

Great.
Shut down a unique, fun New Haven event under the auspice of too much noise. BUT DO NOTHING ABOUT NOISY MOTORCYCLES.
Bill and Nancy this is what you get for flying in the face of the King and running a better arts festival than the over priced arts and ideas fiasco.

posted by: robn on June 2, 2011  11:38am

Roll with it Bill,

In the past, Ideat Village did their thing in these spaces because they were overlooked nooks without a lot of people living there. Now there are a lot of people living there and they’d like a reasonable use of the public plazas around their home. Its established law that people are entitled to quiet enjoyment in their homes, whether they rent or own.
However, it would be interesting to know if Bruce is speaking for his tenants or if its actually the tenants opinion.

posted by: Billy on June 2, 2011  12:06pm

Becker wants it gone…..........And Johnnie D’s going to give it to him. You’ll forget by november!

posted by: Uncle Egg on June 2, 2011  12:10pm

Re: “Its established law that people are entitled to quiet enjoyment in their homes, whether they rent or own.”

True. There is a noise ordinance that spells that out in clear terms. It mandates quiet at 10 p.m., not 7:45 p.m.

posted by: Bill Saunders on June 2, 2011  1:01pm

Anon,

Just to be clear, the performers you are so crassly criticizing are part of the Dr. Sketchy Anti-Art School.  The component of the event you do not see in the picture are the artists drawing the live models.

Not only artistic, but inclusive, and non-judgemental. 
In other words, not tripe.

posted by: Billy on June 2, 2011  1:05pm

I’m all for the civil disobedience suggestion, meta.  That may be the only way to ruffle King John’s feathers a little…and call him on the carpet for giving into the newly arrived power players, while forgetting about all of us who could use a little fun in Pitkin Plaza after toiling to keep his kingdom together all week!  And where will Becker be at 7:45? Undoubtedly relaxing in his Westport palace, while us New Haveners sit quietly and subserviently in Pitkin Plaza.

posted by: adrienne on June 2, 2011  1:08pm

UNBELIEVABLE. i love how New Haven marketing, particularly for 360 State (if that is, indeed, who is directly objecting/requesting this ‘curfew’), is trying to entice people to move into their loft spaces by likening the new high-rise to NYCity-like amazingness (aka “modern urban living”), yet there’s no way that a 7:45 pm curfew would *ever* fly in the Big City. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE reconsider, for the sake of free speech and artistic expression and in order to support the breadth and strength and versatility that is the local New Haven/indie arts scene. Because when all of the rest of the incredibly talented international acts that are part of the Arts and Ideas Fest have left town, it’s the townies - New Haven born and bred and even the transplants who love and breathe this town - who keep this place running. We LIVE here and want to be able to enjoy our own diversity and artistic talent and furthermore share it with others. Think globally, act locally, right?! Come on, New Haven. Embrace your local talent. Step up. We’re better than this. And the world deserves to see and experience it.

Just as a side note, I have participated in this festival as a local and as an amateur performer, and it is generally all-ages and family friendly and drug/alcohol-free.

posted by: What? on June 2, 2011  1:24pm

What???!! Please don’t let New Haven become the next downtown Hartford in which there is no evening scene. 7:45? Who goes to bed that early?
What year is this, 1911?
I look forward the events of Ideat Village every year.
Bill and Nancy, don’t let these nay-sayers discourage you. Where there’s an Ideat, there’s an Ideat village!!
Go-go Ideat Village!!!!!!

posted by: lampwick on June 2, 2011  1:26pm

New city motto:

“New Haven:  The City That’s In Bed By 7:45”

posted by: nfjanette on June 2, 2011  1:27pm

It seems that some of the comments venting rage are confusing some of the facts:

1. 360 State street is not the only complaint about the projected noise level, the festival has a history of generating complaints:

The festival’s noise level has been a longstanding complaint, she said. Even in the early years in Temple Plaza, the festival had to coordinate with the Shubert Theater to make sure noise from the festival didn’t bleed through the back wall of the theater, Pugh said….

2. Despite the opinion of some people, living downtown does not involve signing a virtual waiver to accept unlimited noise (or drunken rampages from club patrons, etc.)

3. Motorcycles with illegal straight pipes (and ATVs) are an issue, but a separate issue, and one certainly deserving of separate police action.

4. The concept of the cut-off time is not new, even the organizer admits that fact and admits they ignored it in the past.

A reasonable question, however, is why is the cut-off time different than that imposed for other public events downtown?  The concerts on the green most likely have ten times the amplification and sound level amounts, yet are allowed to play until around 9 PM.  The noise ordinance, as mentioned in other comments, takes effect at 10 PM.

I’d like to see something worked out to facilitate the event - such things add spice to the flavor of the city.  I’ve seen major artists performing at the agricultural fairs in the state during the daytime, so it’s clearly possible to attract both talent and audience while the sun is still shining.  One approach to compromise might be to have louder performances earlier in the day and evening, and then to finish with more quiet performances after 9 PM until 10 PM.

posted by: Anon on June 2, 2011  1:31pm

Oh Bill, you just keep digging a bigger hole for yourself. While my comments are sweetly pungent, your skin-baring performers are crass. You are projecting on this one! Their name itself is truth in advertising “Sketchy Anti-Art.” This sketchy act would fit without contortion or counterfeit as a Big Easy or April Fools Day parade entertainment. ... How about the former Coliseum site? And try to think up something new for Pitkin. You need to hit the refresh button.

posted by: Molly W on June 2, 2011  2:07pm

Bill and Nancy should be fully supported by the city government. It’s a shame the city won’t recognize the consistently demonstrated love and dedication Nancy and Billy have shown to New Haven. Each year, they provide tremendous support and attention to people doing new and innovative things in this city. Thumbs down, New Haven. 360 State might not mind being a bore, but most of us that love this city do. And 360 State, you did an awful lot to try to convince us you were hip to our civic concerns and preferences… please stay tuned into them.

posted by: Steve B on June 2, 2011  2:23pm

No surprise really that the 360ers would oppose the very urban culture that they ostensibly embraced by choosing to move into a luxury high rise right in the middle of downtown. NIMBYers acting against their own self interest in the name of short sighted tunnel vision is nothing new.

The folks in that building should ask themselves: would they rather endure noise until 10pm a few nights a year as a side effect of living in the middle of a cultural district, or would they prefer that the streets be utterly empty after dark, and see who or what fills in the void? And while they’re thinking about that, they should ask themselves which outcome will be better for their property values.

posted by: Bru Cafe on June 2, 2011  2:29pm

The facts are that the Shubert reached a comprise with the festival when a problem, neither the Shubert or Ideat Village had thought of, was found. It is our understanding that this issue was quickly worked out.

As far as we know there have never been any complaints lodged while the festival was actively ongoing in Pitkin Plaza.

The cut off time was not ignored by the festival’s organizers, rather the Parks Department, despite the alleged cut off time,  issued permits (for this festival, the Bru Concert Series and other events) that specifically, in writing, allowed amplified music until 10:00 and 11:00 p.m.

posted by: Atwater on June 2, 2011  2:47pm

@Anon: The type of art is not important. The public has a right to assemble in public spaces. The noise issue is laughable and the city shouldn’t have been so quick to appease the corporate powers that be. But then again, this wouldn’t be New Haven if our administration didn’t kotow to monied interests.
Is there a method to appeal the city’s curfew? I hope there is and that the curfew is lifted. This(the art festival) is one of the few things that makes going downtown worthwhile and it only happens once a year.

posted by: Billy R on June 2, 2011  2:51pm

There seems to be 2 billy’s here….............I can’t endorse “Billy’s” argument. Hence forward, I shall be “Billy R.”

posted by: Steve Ross, Human on June 2, 2011  3:05pm

I’ll happily get arrested after 7:45 with you, Bill.

Anon,
...your vision of “Art” weakens me as a sentient being.

posted by: Anon on June 2, 2011  3:08pm

The more I think of it, the more I wish that someone could come up with a great program for the former Coliseum site. It is a great place to get your wang dang doodle going all night long.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxCa16-nxtM

posted by: Ideat Villager on June 2, 2011  3:21pm

People need to remember that 360 State St/Becker in the future will need the people/residents of New Haven who would attend Ideat Village to also shop at the future supermarket they are building there. Noise issues are problem not just in downtown New Haven, but also in the suburbs. Moving will not solve the noise issues. I plan to attend Ideat Village like the past 6 years, but I’m not sure I’ll be shopping for groceries at 360 State St when it opens for business.

posted by: Bruce on June 2, 2011  3:43pm

On a completely unrelated tangent, I have been considering playing my conga drum in Pitkin plaza some evening.  Perhaps Friday, June 10th at around 7:46 PM would be convenient (right after my gig at Cafe Nine).  Since the drum is not amplified and I will stop before 10PM, I don’t believe this will be a violation of the city’s noise ordinance.  Since I am certainly not organizing an event and I have no relation whatsoever to Ideat Village, I do not need to apply for a permit.  In fact, if many other people independently decide to play their acoustic instruments in the plaza on the same evening, they would not be violating any city ordinances either.

posted by: Uncle Egg on June 2, 2011  3:58pm

@Bruce: I know a tuba player who would be happy to join you at 7:46 on Friday evenings. Now, where can we find some bagpipes?

posted by: Bru Cafe on June 2, 2011  4:09pm

Bruce and Uncle Egg,

I know a couple of guitar players, namely the co-owners of a business that abuts the plaza, that would be happy to join in.

My 88 Hamer and stack wouldn’t mind lightin’ up.

posted by: Mister Jones on June 2, 2011  4:34pm

Bill plays loud and obnoxious music and is surprised that some people don’t like it and use their power and influence to trim his wings?

posted by: anthony on June 2, 2011  8:17pm

IDEATS village is my favorite summer event in new haven.
This is devastating. I am so disappointed that such an unsavory neighbor like 360 state street is ruining our city.

I hope IDEATS village can find a way to operate past 8pm, despite their awful new neighbors.

posted by: Jo on June 2, 2011  10:53pm

Sometimes New Haven is a tough place to live. Ideat Village has been a celebration, free and open to all. Pitkin Plaza was once a bog, transformed by the music and congeniality of Ideat Village. It is discriminatory to stop the music early. Let the bands play til 10. Let the artists and the audiences meet up, have a nice time. The ears of the tenants of 360 will not be harmed. And the Decade of Ideat Village will end with celebration!

posted by: Gretchen Pritchard on June 3, 2011  7:20am

This is bizarre.

We in Beaver Hills are used to ultra-amplified music AND PREACHING from the GospelFest in the park across from Hillhouse High School and many other summertime events.  The neighborhood topography makes a natural amphitheater and the sound carries right into our yards at full volume.  This quiet leafy neighborhood deals with it.  The New Urbanists who have moved to a high-rise next to Pitkin Plaza can deal with a couple of vibrant events a year too.

I agree that 10:00 pm would make much more sense as a cutoff than 7:45.

posted by: Pedro on June 3, 2011  10:29am

Is 360 State going to make the concerts on the green shut down at 7:45 as well? Surely those events are just as loud (they certainly have more amplification).  If you live downtown in a city, you have to expect a certain level of noise, especially before dark!!

posted by: dave coon on June 3, 2011  10:29am

Bill,
Send me a message through Ben if you still want me to play records between sets.  I’m cookin up a yoko ono dj set that will rattle some windows…

posted by: 360 State Street on June 3, 2011  11:16am

360 State Street enjoys being part of the downtown community and is a supporter of the arts.  We hope our residents will enjoy this event scheduled to take place on their doorstep.

posted by: streever on June 3, 2011  11:29am

@360 State Street
I am uncertain how the festival goers will enjoy a show that ends almost 2 and a half hours early, because of your unfounded fears that it will upset some of your residents.

I think it is notable that no other residential landlord in that area has used an iron fist approach, meeting privately with the city, to shut down a local event held there.

I absolutely will not be patronizing your coop. I’m really glad I didn’t join. I can buy inexpensive produce at Romeo’s a block away whenever I need them, and P&M another block away has a huge selection of meats.

posted by: Uncle Egg on June 3, 2011  11:30am

This is silly. If 360 State had been built next to an existing airport, would its management be within its rights to insist that all flights be scheduled between the hours of 10 a.m. and 7:45 p.m.? Of course not. And if residents complained about the noise, we would blame management for failing to adequately warn them about the air-traffic noise.

Why is this so different? Ideat Village existed before 360 State was a greedy gleam in Bruce Becker’s green eyes. If its residents were not adequately warned that on a few nights a year an abutting plaza is used for concerts that might slightly inconvenience some residents for a couple of hours into the evening, why is that suddenly everybody else’s problem?

posted by: Bru Cafe on June 3, 2011  2:20pm

@ 360 State Street

The anonymous author from 360 State Street claims, “360 State Street enjoys being part of the downtown community and is a supporter of the arts.  We hope our residents will enjoy this event scheduled to take place on their doorstep”...

If, in fact this is a true statement, then the management of 360 State Street would - publicly remove their opposition to the event - issue a public apology to the community in general for their actions and tell the City (and Park Department) to let the SHOW GO ON as requested by the organizers, Bill and Nancy.

I am sure that the New Haven Independent would print 360 State Street’s apology and retraction of it’s opposition.

Curtis Packer

posted by: Smith on June 3, 2011  2:36pm

I really don’t think this has anything to do with noise but more with the huge mess he has created with City Hall…

...

posted by: artsHMMMM.whatanIDEA! on June 3, 2011  2:50pm

In the meantime, we’re working on getting a petition together at the Ideat Village fundraiser this weekend AND I’m also presently on the prowl for my group of bagpiper friends.

Bring it! 360 State.365 Days.360000 Signatures on Our Petition.

posted by: unhappy ideat! on June 3, 2011  3:15pm

Ideats UNITE!! Come out and support Bill and Nancy like it is the last Ideat Village!! Spend the day, spend the night sing dance laugh love and enjoy the REAL arts and ideas of New Haven!! The city hates the fact that this event is free, the permits are inexpensive do they do not reap the benefits of racking in more money.  Johnny Boy is RUINING New Haven!! The parking meters are going to be extended until midnight. Great that will make non-residence come into town for dinner! The dinner bill is on average 50 to 100 bucks and now you get a 20 dollar ticket as a thank you! Sorry getting off topic here.

I say we all go to Pitkin every night and at 7:46 we all start to sing while acoustic music plays for us.

posted by: Truth Avenger on June 3, 2011  4:06pm

I attended the IDEAT Village festival downtown last year. I also spent money on food and other items while I was downtown. Johnny-come-lately(s) like those at 360 State Street need to be better neighbors for the greater good and understand that the festival benefits local businesses, the city as a whole, and the rest of the tax paying citizens who have a stake in what goes on downtown.
Many folks who moved to 360 State street moved in for the energy of down-town living and the nightlife- they too should have a say in how late the festival music can play. Those that are unhappy can take a powder and go some place if they cannot figure a way to deal with a little noise (earplugs?)and accommodate their neighbors and guests for a short-term run. This festival is too important to lose because of wimpy bureaucrats and selfish neighbors who want to rain on everyone’s parade. Summer is festival time-get used to it and get over yourselves!

posted by: Jonathan Hopkins on June 3, 2011  7:41pm

The residents of 360 State should be aware of what they’re buying into - an apartment in the densest core of the city. Perhaps the fake that many vacant lots line State Street and the entire east side of State is not gravel lots has lead to the residents thinking they are in some secluded tower in a park.

posted by: Broadway Plaza on June 5, 2011  9:08am

Move it to the plaza on Broadway. Problem Solved. Then get some bands to play @ the old and the new Rudy, Toads, Vivas, Owl Shop, on High Street etc.  Then people would walk the streets and patronize all the business in between!

posted by: robn on June 5, 2011  1:54pm

actually…since Mr Becker begins his occupiable floors 60 feet in the air as a means of avoiding garage sprinkler and ventilation costs, his tenants have quite a bit of distance between them and the plaza and maybe they won’t be affected by a festival.
I won’t mention how much I hate the full block garage facade and the weak attempts to screen it.

posted by: 8 PM on June 6, 2011  4:36pm

How about a public gathering for a drum circle, to welcome 360 State to the city!  How about 8 pm any one interested?

posted by: Joe Wilson on June 7, 2011  6:56pm

“Johnny Boy is RUINING New Haven!! The parking meters are going to be extended until midnight. Great that will make non-residence come into town for dinner! The dinner bill is on average 50 to 100 bucks and now you get a 20 dollar ticket as a thank you! Sorry getting off topic here.”

That’s $20 if they pay it right away, doubling to $40 after 15 days, and then to $60 after 30 days! I live in New Haven, have been a patron of nearly every shop and restaurant in town at one point or another, and I’m already fed up enough to stop doing lunch in New Haven. When the meters go in, I’ll do dinners elsewhere as well.

As for the festival, it seems the issue has finally been resolved, and the show WILL go on, and I am one more person HAPPY to have it so. New Haven’s art scene is vibrant and diverse- exactly what an art scene should be. Any anonymous authors who find it not to their liking may be shocked to discover that many others have different tastes, and not everything is intended for their narrow pleasure. ...

posted by: Crafter Guitar on June 8, 2011  11:55am

They should not complain about the festival because it got their first before them. And they knew about the festival before they transfer to that building. The festival is the sign of unity among neighbors they must not act like that. And the plaza is a public space after all, it’s for everyone to use. It doesn’t mean that because they don’t like for it is noisy they would be the one to decide what to do. It is a TRADITION. They don’t have the right.

posted by: Davis on June 9, 2011  8:55am

It suprises me that I have read several comments that who does 360 state think they are, one person or entity can ask for silence at a certain time and then I hear all the outrage about this one entity or person. Yet one person or entity can disrupt a high school graduation or prevent an assembly at a particular building that has a cross on their building and yet no outrage. It disgust me of the double standards that I hear and see everyday. It also alarms me that people will comment on soemthing that they no nothing about. It is my understanding that 360 state asked for AMPLIFIED music to end at 8:00 PM, not the festival itself. It is the responsibility of any landlord to ensure the peaceful living of his/her renters, and 360 State voiced their concerns on behalf of the comfort and peaceful living of their renters. They in no way asked for the festival to end at 8:00 PM. They are being attacked for something that never happened. And for those of you who are suggesting that they bring their guitars and tuba’s and other musical instruments to the plaza after 8PM, I say go ahead as long as it is not amplified.