Neighborhood Bars Plan Could be Changed

(KCPW News) The Salt Lake City Council is taking a closer look at Mayor Ralph Becker’s plan to allow more bars into neighborhoods after more than a dozen residents showed up to protest the proposal at Tuesday’s council meeting. Councilman Charlie Luke, who represents the city’s east side, says too many residential areas are being considered OK for bars and pubs.

“The concern that I have is that we are looking at and trying to treat every neighborhood in the city the same,” Luke said. “And while I think some establishments make sense in some areas, in other areas they may not.”

Luke suggests the council look at removing four of the 15 zones where neighborhood bars would be allowed, including residential business and neighborhood commercial zones.

But Mayor Becker’s spokesman, Art Raymond, says Luke’s plan takes away from the purpose of creating more walkable communities.

“It changes the proposal significantly and certainly undermines the mayor’s intent to create new options for businesses in neighborhood business districts, and again as part of a bigger plan to make our great neighborhood business nodes – to put them in a position to offer a full range of businesses,” Raymond said.

Raymond adds Becker’s proposal has specific details outlining noise regulations, signage, and light levels to make sure neighborhoods are not disrupted. The council will address the issue again in August.