Noise Complaints About DC Music Festival’s Glow Dance Project – NBC4 Washington

Many people in DC complained about the loud music coming from the RFK festival site on Sunday night. People say the second night of the Project Glow Dance Festival was particularly loud.

Offering two days of music on the festival grounds of the RFK parking lot, Project Glow was billed as the district’s first electronic music festival. But in every neighborhood in the area, people were complaining about the volume and slow music, especially for a Sunday night.

One person tweeted from College Park, Maryland saying they could hear music from their house. “How did you allow this on a Sunday night?” they tweeted.

A resident who lives a few blocks from the scene said she heard everything clearly.

“It was loud and it rocked our house,” she said. “But it looked like people were having a good time. We didn’t go.”

She said it didn’t wake her child, so it wasn’t that bad, but about three miles away in the northeast neighborhood of Bloomingdale’s, a tweet implored the mayor to ” Please make it stop. I have to work tomorrow and I need some sleep.”

Noises echoing in the hills of Anacostia were also common, and residents of Oklahoma Avenue, some of the houses closest to the scene, say they heard the bass lines but didn’t mind it too much.

But across the DC line in Mount Rainier, Maryland, noise complaints prompted police to search for the source of the sound.

Sunday night’s weather may have helped amplify the volume. Another possible explanation could be the way the audio system was configured.

Mayor Muriel Bowser responded to the complaints at an event on Monday.

“I know a lot of people were upset by this, so we certainly regret that,” she said.

“I don’t want to sugarcoat that – certainly no one would expect an event at RFK to reverberate for miles and miles,” she added. “We want the festival to take place. We want live music. We want people to have a good time. But we want people to enjoy the peace and quiet too.

Events DC sent News4 the following statement:

“Events DC strives to attract events that bring positive cultural and economic benefits to our Nation’s Capital. At the same time, we recognize the impact that events at our venues have on our surrounding communities. At every event, we work closely with community stakeholders, event organizers, promoters, and other district agencies to mitigate any negative impacts, including excessive noise, traffic, and litter.

In response to community concerns following the Project GLOW festival, we plan to implement changes at future events to better control noise levels in the community, including:

– Review the policy relating to the days and hours of operation of all events
– Adjusted placement and direction of event/concert speakers
– Improved control of speakers and soundboard during gigs

Events DC appreciates the positive relationship with our neighbors and will continue to address all community concerns as a top priority.

Events DC did not respond to questions about volume and whether decibel levels were monitored.

Low clouds, temperature inversion may have helped amplify concert noise

So why did the noise travel like that? Storm Team4 meteorologist Amelia Draper explained that this could be due to sound waves being trapped and channeled by low clouds.

“The weather probably played a part in it being so loud,” Draper said. “We have a lot of clouds there, so the clouds kind of trapped the noise in the lower levels and allowed those sound waves to travel farther or appear louder as well.”

Many DC residents have complained about the extreme noise coming from Sunday night’s Project Glow Fest concert. Amelia Draper, meteorologist for Storm Team4, explains how the weather conditions could have contributed to the worsening of the situation.

Draper noted that the extent of the weather’s effect remains to be seen, but the DC area experienced what’s called a temperature inversion on Sunday night: cooler air at the surface and warmer air aloft.

Typically, the air gets cooler as it rises, but that wasn’t the case on Sunday night, so the loud music got trapped on the surface. Similar things happen with our fireworks here all the time, Draper said.

The festival’s loud music was trapped on the surface rather than allowed to escape into the atmosphere, and that’s why it was so extraordinarily loud, Draper said.

The weather can’t be blamed entirely on the extreme volume, Draper said, because she thinks without the temperature inversion, the music would still have been loud.

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