Battle Over Noise, Traffic Concerns at Wedding Venue | News

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Battle Over Noise, Traffic Concerns at Wedding Venue
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PONTE VEDRA, Fla. -- At Palm Valley Gardens in Ponte Vedra, some say a several year-long battle over noise and traffic concerns is almost over, but others disagree.

"On the weekends, you'll hear the noise from the weddings," Lisa Persson said. She lives across the street from Palm Valley Gardens, a special event venue which hosts meetings, parties and weddings.

"You do seem to hear Sweet Home Alabama," Persson said of the frequently played songs. "That seems to be a favorite of everybody's."

Since 2010, there have been 35 noise complaints against PVG, according to St. Johns County Sheriff's Office.

"You can definitely hear it," Persson said. "When you sit outside in our backyard it's almost like you're there."

Previously a landscaping nursery, the estate began hosting weddings in 2007.

In 2010, a noise complaint led the county to file and grant a special use permit to allow for outdoor weddings.

Then in Nov. 2011, another special use permit was approved, but with restrictions, including the addition of a six-foot fence, a limit of 65 vehicles, and limited hours of operation.

"We've been working very diligently and hard to get those things done so this would not affect our brides at all," said Madyson Holden, PVG director of sales and operations.

According to county records, PVG appealed the permit, citing unreasonable conditions.

Holden believes they are now in compliance with the added stipulations.

"We don't want to be a burden to the community," Holden said.

But not all neighbors are on the same page.

"I can imagine people who have lived here a long time and have had this for many years might not enjoy it as much," Persson said.

Other neighbors did not want to appear on camera, but voiced their own concerns about the noise.

One told First Coast News the noise is still a problem.

The St. Johns County Commission will take the issue to vote next week.

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