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Some residents not happy with city's ease on sidewalk café regulations

The sound of waves crashing on the sand and birds squawking outside the window are not the only noises that residents of See the Sea Condominiums and guests at the Crystal Pier Hotel and Cottages hear at night.

They also hear the yells, laughs, and a kick-drum beating its way into the street from the 710 Beach Club on Garnet Avenue in Pacific Beach.

It’s been 20 years since the San Diego city attorney met with neighbors and club owner Scott Slaga to try and hash out a resolution to the hundreds of noise complaints. Two decades later, little has changed, except for the addition of a new restaurant that club owner Slaga purchased next door and a new permit from the city for a 200-square-foot sidewalk café outside the popular bar/restaurant. Nearby residents are now urging the city to revoke the outdoor-café permit. If not, they say the noise will only increase and their quality of life will decrease.

“The sidewalk café shall be used only for dining, drinking, and circulation. The café may provide either waiter/waitress service or self service,” reads the permit from the City of San Diego.

The new permit was issued two days after city councilmembers Kevin Faulconer and Lorie Zapf announced a new initiative to ease requirements to open sidewalk cafés. “We all know we live in a beautiful city with fantastic weather. Small businesses shouldn’t have to pay thousands of dollars for a permit so we can eat outside and enjoy it,” stated councilmember Kevin Faulconer in a February 5 press release. “This reform will cut red tape for restaurants so they can focus on what they do best — creating jobs, and serving, and entertaining San Diegans.”

Faulconer’s announcement didn’t sit well with his constituents that live within party-noise distance of the 710 Beach Club.

Read the full story in The San Diego Reader HERE.