Margaret Hicks stands on lower Broadway near the intersection of Concord Avenue, where she lives, with the site of the Three Bear Open Air Music Festival behind her.
— Star photo by Gary Kean
CORNER BROOK The City of Corner Brook says residents of the lower Broadway will have full access to their homes during an all-day music festival planned for Sept. 7.
Gates for the Three Bear Open Air Music Festival will open at 2 p.m. on that Saturday, and a portion of lower Broadway will be shut down to vehicular traffic.
Margaret Hicks lives on Concord Avenue, a side street off lower Broadway. She has voiced her concerns about late-night noise emanating from the nightclub district in the past.
When she heard about the Three Bear Open Air event, she wanted some answers regarding the logistics behind closing down lower Broadway.
“I asked the city and the mayor where the stage was going to be and how fire trucks and ambulances would be able to get to our area if it was all shut down, but they didn’t have the answers,” Hicks said.
According to Mike Dolter, the City of Corner Brook’s chief administrative officer, the stage for the festival will be set up in front of the large building which once housed The Studio nightclub. A barricade will be set up running across the street from that building to the other side of Broadway.
“When we sat down with (organizing partner) Gros Morne Summer Music, we identified that this is a residential area and the people who live there would have to still be able to access their homes and that will be the case,” assured Dolter.
He said Corner Brook Fire Chief Neville Wheaton has been advised of the festival plans and is comfortable with the setup in terms of emergency response vehicles also being able to access the neighbourhood in the event of an emergency.
The closed section will be from that barricade up to the intersection of Broadway with Caribou Road and Herald Avenue. Dolter said the Corner Brook Downtown Business Association is onboard with the festival idea and has been in communication with the businesses within the closed area.
“No one has come to talk to us about this,” noted Hicks, referring to the area’s residents.
Dolter said it is his understanding that representatives from Gros Morne Summer Music will be making an effort to speak with residents as the planning of the festival continues.
Hicks still has concerns about how loud this event will be for those living in the area and how late it will go on.
The municipal noise bylaw states that things should be quiet between the hours of 10 p.m. and 7 a.m., but there is a process by which application can be made to the city for “a special permit for a specified period of time” for special events such as a festival or concert.
The event website does not state when the shows are expected to be over.
According to the site, there will be six bands performing at the festival, including The Sadies, Novaks, The Pathological Lovers, Repartee, The Monday Nights and Sherman Downey and the Ambiguous Case. The festival, which will include a beer garden, will be hosted by comedian Jonny Harris.