Evening buzz across the river
Residents complain about noise from Carlstadt nightclub Dragonfly
by Adriana Rambay Fernández
Reporter Staff Writer
Jul 15, 2012 | 8759 views | 2 2 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
NIGHTTIME BUZZ – Secaucus residents have complained about alleged loud noise coming from the nightclub Dragonfly, which is located across the Hackensack River in Carlstadt.
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Residents who live in the Secaucus development Riverview Court and the surrounding area along the Hackensack River have complained about alleged noise disturbances coming across the river from the nightclub Dragonfly, which is located in Carlstadt by the Izod Center.

“The residents were calling me and holding their phone up to their windows and I could hear it,” said Mayor Michael Gonnelli during a recent Secaucus Town Council meeting. “It was a real problem.”

He said that he called Mayor William Roseman of Carlstadt at 12:30 a.m. one night in June and that Roseman went over to Dragonfly to deal with the situation himself.

Roseman did not return phone calls by press time.

Undergoing review

Dragonfly Marina Bar and Grill, which bills itself as the largest indoor/outdoor club in Northern New Jersey, is open Tuesday through Sunday from the afternoon to 2 a.m. and has a restaurant, sports bar, an outdoor bar, happy hour, dancing, and live entertainment.
“There have been a lot of complaints because of the music that goes on in the wee hours in the morning.” – John Bueckner
Dragonfly is on a provisional status while their entertainment license, which expired at the end of June, undergoes review by a number of municipal agencies in Carlstadt. On Saturday July 14 Salsa musician Jerry Rivera was due to perform at the nightclub at 7 p.m. for a daytime party followed by a performance by Secreto Live.

Late night complaints

“There have been a lot of complaints because of the music that goes on in the wee hours in the morning,” said Deputy Mayor John Bueckner during a June council meeting.

He said that the club has little regard for the surrounding areas. “We hear it in the north end of town because it is right across the river,” he said.

Bueckner said the Bergen County Department of Health Services issued the bar a noise violation notice on June 14, which must be complied with by July 14.

Decibel meter readings

A representative of Hudson County Regional Health on June 9 set up a decibel meter at the foot of Paterson Plank Road in Secaucus to measure noise levels, according to Gonnelli. While the statewide allowable decibel from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. is 50, the meter measured 68 decibels, according to Gonnelli.

“I live quite a distance from there at the top of the hill and on occasion I could hear it,” said Town Administrator David Drumeler. He said the decimal meter reading of 70 is comparable to the noise coming from a vacuum if you are standing a meter away, but the noise levels recorded in Secaucus were just as loud a quarter of a mile away. Under NJMC regulations the maximum noise allowed from 9 p.m. to 7 a.m. in a residential zone is 45 decibels.

Carlstadt addresses issue

Drumeler, along with Councilman James Clancy, attended a Carlstadt council meeting in June where the mayor and council members addressed the issue.

“We were very appreciative that the mayor invited us to come to a council caucus,” said Drumeler. “It wasn’t an issue affecting his residents…[and] they understood it was causing consternation on our side of the river.”

The Dragonfly attorney explained what the nightclub would do to address the alleged noise disturbance issue at the Carlstadt council meeting, according to Drumeler. The attorney said Dragonfly had recently put up a metal barrier to mute the sound of their outdoor music.

Calls to the club owners were not returned by press time.

Drumeler said that the issue has gotten better the last couple of weekends.

Bueckner advised any Secaucus resident that experiences loud music from the nightclub should call the Carlstadt police at (201) 438-4300.

Adriana Rambay Fernández may be reached at afernandez@hudsonreporter.com.

Comments-icon Post a Comment
July 18, 2012
When you build a sound stage on open water’s edge you are going to have the sound carry a longer distance and be amplified by the sound reflecting off the surface of the water. A simple solution for the residents is to buy a white noise generator and place it in their bedroom. White noise is something constant much like an air conditioner

Short of closing the place down a good permanent solution would be for the owners of the establishment to erect a heavy duty glass wall behind the sound stage as I believe it is an outdoor venue. Glass is a fantastic sound insulator, will reflect the noise away from the people across the river in Secaucus and will still allow the people at the venue to have an open view of the river.

The owners of this venue need to do this out of respect for others. Problem solved.

July 15, 2012
I did not hear anything last night, July 14.

I live in the North End and several blocks from the end of Paterson Plank Road. I can hear everything clear as day (or is it as night???) while the band plays on over there.

The noise is excessive; 1:30 in the morning and later is no time to have a band make an outdoor appearance.

There are bars very close to a residential area that abide by a strict noise ordinance rule. When it is 10:30 pm, that's the end of the band playing outdoors. The same rule should apply here. Take the party indoors at that point.