Neighbors and a prominent music spot on the Near Northside remain engaged in a contentious legal battle that began last year when residents labeled the venue a nuisance.
In December 2016, neighbors near the White Oak Music Hall brought a lawsuit against the venue, saying the sound and music waves reverberated off their walls and disturbed the peace of their neighborhood. A judge subsequently granted the plaintiffs a temporary injunction this past January. Originally the case was scheduled to go before a court Oct. 16 before delays caused by Hurricane Harvey’s landfall; and Dec. 11 before parties purportedly requested a new date.
Johnny So with White Oak Music Hall and Wayne Dolcefino — speaking as a spokesperson for Feldman and Feldman law firm and the plaintiffs — both confirmed that news Monday morning.
“It has always been our hope that we can resolve this issue in a way to protect the good people who are now forced to live around White Oak Music Hall and its outdoor concert venue,” Dolcefino said. “As long as there are good faith negotiations and discussions to possibly make that happen, we have mutually agreed to move the trial date.”
And So says that is, in fact, occurring.
“The parties continue to work in good faith towards a potential resolution and will continue that work in the coming days; in the meantime, they have requested a trial postponement,” he said.
Neither party wished to elaborate any further on the framework of a potential resolution. As of press time, parties had not yet received word from a judge on the later date; only that it would not be happening this week as previously scheduled.
According to the current injunction, White Oak was permitted to continue concerts ahead of the rescheduled trial date if they provided at least two days written notice of when sound checks on the lawn will begin and 72 hours’ notice for any events on the patio. A judge also ordered sound levels could not exceed 75 decibels, and sound-monitoring devices must be installed on all sides of the property. The owners were also required to submit weekly reports of the results of those measurements to the court and the plaintiffs’ attorney.
This past June, the group revised their suit, adding the city of Houston as a defendant and claiming the city has failed to properly enforce the sound ordinance.