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Brick and Mortar can turn it up a notch, stay open later after improvements pass muster

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A proposed blueprint for Japantown

Owners of Brick and Mortar Music Hall spent nearly $50,000 over the past 18 months to soundproof their venue to appease neighbors and prevent too much noise from projecting out of the building.

The amount of work done proved to be enough to allow the venue to stay open until 1 a.m. on weekends and 12:30 a.m. on weekdays. Owners also can raise the decibel level on live music by 10 points to 90.

Restrictions were placed on Brick and Mortar in May. The club had to operate at an 80-decibel level until proper soundproofing was completed. It also had to close by 12:30 a.m. on weekends and 11:30 p.m. on weeknights.

The decision to ease the restrictions comes after months of negotiations and heated arguments between club owners, neighbors and commissioners, which seem to have died down in the past few weeks.

“I think you've done a really good job,” Entertainment Commissioner Audrey Joseph told owners of Brick and Mortar on Tuesday as they presented their case to the Entertainment Commission to have the restrictions loosened.

Though countless hours of work have been completed, including adding layers of Sheetrock and a layer of soundboard, owners acknowledged that the work is not complete.

“It's not a science, it's an art,” co-owner Jason Perkins said. “We've had consultants come out three times, and when one idea wouldn't work we'd do some work and try it again.”

The club owners said they also created a shell and lowered the ceiling around the stage to help control sound. And they have provided neighbors with cellphone numbers of management to notify them of sound issues immediately.

Neighbors who have lived in the area for years said they have noticed a difference since the May restrictions.

Elexandria Deitz, 36, a resident of Woodward Street, said relations with the owners have improved and she has noticed a difference in noise levels.

“There have been significant improvements in sound,” she said. “I rarely hear anything.”

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