Board Renews Westover Beer Garden Use Permits

Published on October 22, 2018


  • Friday night amplified outdoor music no later than 9 p.m.

  • Administrative review in June 2019

  • Revised sound management plan


The Arlington County Board on Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018 renewed use permits allowing the Westover Market at 5863 Washington Blvd. to continue operating its Beer Garden, with a requirement that outdoor amplified live entertainment end at 9 p.m. on Friday nights.

"The Board recognizes that the Westover Beer Garden is a popular gathering spot for the neighborhood," County Board Chair Katie Cristol said. "But it also is close to homes. Arlington's mixed-use neighborhoods, where we sometimes have commercial uses very close to homes, depend on everyone following the rules to work. By reducing the hours for amplified outdoor music, the Board is seeking to address the violation, while also giving the Beer Garden a path forward to comply with the conditions of its use permit."

The Board voted unanimously to renew the use permits, but revised the hours amplified live entertainment is allowed outdoors at the Beer Garden on Friday night to 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., one hour less than the current 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. allowed on Friday nights. The Beer Garden management is required to present a revised sound management plan that will address the impacts on the surrounding community of amplified sound to the County Manager by March 2019. The County Board will review the use permits again in October 2019.

To read the staff report, visit the County website. Scroll to Item No. 29 on the agenda for the Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018 Regular County Board Meeting.

Acoustic live entertainment at the Beer Garden still will be allowed year-round, Tuesdays through Thursdays from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.;  Fridays through Sundays from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.; from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Mondays that are designated federal holidays, and from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. on July 4.County seal

Background


Westover Beer Garden is the only establishment in the County to have been granted an outdoor live entertainment use permit. The Board first approved live entertainment at the Beer Garden in May 2011. In 2018, the Board approved a new use permit for the outdoor cafe to have more seating outside than inside. In its presentation to the Board, staff reported that the Arlington County Police Department had received 12 calls for loud noise at the Beer Garden since the last use permit review in March 2018.

On June 15, 2018, Arlington County Code Enforcement conducted a sound reading during live entertainment hours at the Beer Garden and found that the sounds levels exceeded the permitted limit after 9 p.m.  Staff subsequently recommended eliminating amplified instruments to mitigate noise impacts on the surrounding neighborhood.