Balboa Park Committee Will Discuss West Mesa Noise Buffer & Decibel Limit on Thursday, July 6th, at 6:00 p.m.

On Thursday, July 6, 2017, the Balboa Park Committee will have the following informational item on its agenda:

501: “Establishing a Noise Buffer & Decibel Limit on the West Mesa” which would apply to special events held on the West Mesa of Balboa Park.

This is the a further step in the process of advancing the noise buffer proposal forward that was recommended by the West Mesa Subcommittee of the the Balboa Park Committee in January 2017.  The need to establish a buffer zone along the west side of Balboa Park that borders Bankers Hill/Park West neighborhood was included as a policy recommendation in the Noise Element (page NE-158) of the update of Uptown Community Plan approved in November 2016.

The Balboa Park Committee will meet on July 6, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. in the Balboa Park Club Santa Fee Room, at 2150 Pan American Road West in Balboa Park.


Below is the recommendation from the West Mesa Subcommittee, which was unanimously supported by the Metro San Diego CDC Board/Charter Committee:


January 25, 2017

Honorable Mayor Kevin Faulconer & Members of the City Council

City of San Diego

220 C Street,

San Diego, California 92101



West Mesa Subcommittee Letter In Support Establishing A Noise Buffer and Noise Decibel Limit Along Sixth Avenue in Bankers Hill/Park West:

Dear Mayor Faulconer & Members of the City Council:

As stated in the Uptown Community Plan (2017): “Noise and amplification associated with special events that take place on the west side of Balboa Park present serious challenges for the neighborhoods of Bankers Hill/Park West.”  In late 2009, the West Mesa Committee of the Balboa Park Committee prepared a report entitled “Balboa Park Special Events on 6th Avenue & the West Mesa; Sharing Boundaries with the Community”.  The report was subsequently adopted by the Balboa Park Committee, and submitted to the city for implementation.

In November of 2016, the City Council approved an update to the Uptown Community Plan. In the update Uptown Plan’s Noise Element, on page NE-158; four of the policy recommendations are:

NE-21-1: “Consider the establishment of a ‘buffer zone’ between the location of special events and Sixth Avenue” in Balboa Park”;

NE-1-22: “Relocate sound stages and amplification equipment away from Sixth Avenue”;

 NE-1.23: “Apply noise decibel monitoring to public address systems for announcements and all sound equipment used by musicians and other performers utilizing amplified sound”;

NE-1.25: “Monitor sound levels at special events to ensure that noise does not exceed the allowed noise level as specified in the noise ordinance”.

At its January 17, 2017 meeting, the West Mesa Subcommittee passed the following motion ( by 8-0 vote) with the intent to implement the recommendations of the Uptown Community Plan Noise Element and West Mesa Subcommittee’s Special Event Report:.

1.)  That sound systems for any special events on the West Mesa of Balboa Park be placed at least 50 feet back (east) of the east curb of Sixth Avenue. This will create a 50-foot buffer zone between amplified sound equipment and Sixth Avenue, reducing unsafe noise levels in the adjacent community;

2.) That the measured noise level from amplified sound at special events in Balboa Park be limited to 70 decibels at the east curb of Sixth Avenue;

Sincerely Yours,

Don Liddell,

Co-Chair, West Mesa Subcommittee

Of the Balboa Park Committee