Earsore On Fremont Street?


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As downtown Las Vegas redevelopment continues, the noise that new ventures create periodically comes up as a concern.

Atomic Liquors, the historic bar on Fremont Street, has applied for a special-use permit to open a restaurant next door called Atomic Kitchen. 

Some neighbors have objected to the restaurant, arguing that it will be too noisy.

Lance Johns, co-owner of Atomic Liquors, told KNPR's State of Nevada that he is surprised by the reaction because for so long the focus has been on opening new businesses not restricting them.

"I would say that most people are happy about the development that's been going on down there," he said.

Johns pointed out that development brings people and that naturally brings noise.

One of the people opposed to plans for Atomic Kitchen is community member Rev. Stephen Smith.

Smith said he's not opposed to development he is just asking for noise restrictions so worship at his church will not be interrupted on Sunday mornings or on special days of worship like Good Friday.

"They won't allow their noise to be restricted on their license," he said, "It is just about fundamental fairness so that we can survive as well."

Smith said he tried to work out a compromise with Johns about the noise issue, but he said they wouldn't budge on restrictions.

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For his part, Johns said asking for restrictions for a problem that hasn't presented itself yet is like arresting someone for looking like he might commit a crime.

"They want a prospective agreement moving forward," he said. 

Johns said he would be available to talk to business owners if a problem arose, which over the past two and a half years that Atomic Liquors has been open hasn't happened. 

Smith said that while Johns may be willing to address problems if the license is granted and another owner takes over the property they may not be as willing.

"If another operator wants to come in those rights go with the land," he said. "Lance is long gone and we're stuck with the problem. And it's not fair."


Lance Johns, owner, Atomic Liquors; Reverend Stephen Smith downtown Las Vegas community member and businessman



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