New data shows nuisance noise prompts growing complaints across Vancouver

By The Canadian Press
July 12, 2016 - 10:33am

VANCOUVER — New statistics indicate peace and quiet can be a disappearing commodity in some Vancouver neighbourhoods.

Data from Vancouver’s 311 call service reveals 2,148 noise complaints were received in 2015, almost double those received just four years earlier.

More than half originated in just five of the city’s 22 neighbourhoods, led by 421 complaints from the Yaletown and downtown area and 264 in the west end.

Other noisy neighbourhoods include Mount Pleasant, Kitsilano and Grandview-Woodlands, with more than 100 noise complaints in 2015, while Oakridge, South Cambie and Arbutus rank as the quietest areas, with 30 complaints or fewer. 

Chief licensing inspector Andreea Toma says higher volumes are tolerated in busier neighbourhoods, such as the downtown core, but she says noise bylaws apply everywhere and carry fines of up to $500.

Toma says the soaring number of complaints might also reflect a growing familiarity with Vancouver’s 311 service line but adds the city is not downplaying problems caused by repeat offenders.

“We are looking into creating a nuisance bylaw … where we have the ability to put a charge onto the property owner because they keep becoming a nuisance to the neighbourhood. We’ve been called there once, twice, three times,” she says. 

Noisy nightlife, after-hours construction and loud mechanical equipment, such as air conditioners, top the list of complaints, says Toma.

Vancouver may have to review and adjust acceptable noise limits in various neighbourhoods to reflect increasing densification, she adds. (CKNW)

The Canadian Press

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