Tempe City Council in support of Shady Park in legal battle with retirement community
PHOENIX — The Tempe City Council has thrown its support behind Shady Park, whose future is in doubt after a judge recently ruled its live music hours must be limited to accommodate a nearby retirement community.
Vice Mayor Randy Keating penned a letter Thursday, signed by the entire city council, affirming support for Shady Park.
A Maricopa County Superior Court judge on April 12 sided with Mirabella at ASU’s complaints that the noise and hours of operation were causing “the possibility of irreparable injury” to residents.
“We hope that this local business can be preserved and that live music venues, which contribute much to Tempe’s culture, will be able to continue to add to our city’s quality of life and economy,” the letter said.
Shady Park can only have live music from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. six days a week and 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Sundays as part of the preliminary injunction. A limit on noise levels was also included in the ruling.
It’s a move, if upheld, the venue said would likely result in it shutting down.
“This ruling has the potential to cost many employees their jobs and rob the city of Tempe of an economic and cultural asset,” the letter said.
Mirabella at ASU, a community for those 62 years old and older, opened in December 2020 on the southeast side of Mill Avenue and University Drive, directly across from the venue.
Shady Park wasn’t hosting live concerts at that time due to the COVID-19 pandemic, resuming operations in May 2021.
Mirabella residents said that when the concerts resumed, the noise was “incessant” and “unrelenting,” and was often the loudest after 1 a.m.
Shady Park, in Tempe since 2015, intends to appeal the ruling.
“As councilmembers, we believe that every Tempe resident should be able to enjoy a peaceful environment in their home no matter the hour and a good night’s sleep,” the letter said.
“With that said, we also believe that live music venues like Shady Park that have operated for years in the Mill Avenue District should be able to coexist and thrive with the downtown’s many permanent residents.”