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Is overnight construction of Salvation Army's shelter illegal?

Is early morning construction illegal?
Posted at 4:39 PM, Feb 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-07 19:49:05-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Construction crews aren't supposed to work in residential areas overnight, but our crews found one working on a major project near Crosstown Expressway and Buford.

This is where they're building the Salvation Army's new shelter.

At about 3:45 a.m. Friday, one of our photographers found a crew on the premises pouring concrete.

The city said that's against the rules.

Before dawn, workers pour concrete for the new shelter, and believe it or not, this isn't uncommon.

“We do run into this a lot, especially during the summer where concrete pours occur at night,” said Michael Dice, the city’s assistant director of development services. “Concrete has to set and the heat affects the set.”

But is it legal?

“It would be a violation of the noise ordinance to be working at that time,” Dice said.

According to Chapter 31-3 of the city code, noise needs to be kept under 60 decibels between 11 p.m. and 8 a.m. Sunday through Thursday; midnight and 8 a.m. Friday and Saturday,

The Sonetics Corporation estimates pouring concrete at 80 decibels.

So what can be done?

“Our normal practice is to reach out to the contractor/owner and let them know they could be in violation of the noise ordinance,” Dice said.

But that's only if there's a complaint.

So far, neighbors haven't complained to the city about the nighttime work, and even if they did, the penalties aren't that harsh.

Noise complaint violations are Class C misdemeanors, carrying up to a $500 fine.

And even that is a last resort.

“We tend to work with them and the neighbors to make sure everyone is on the same page with their construction schedule,” Dice said.

We tried contacting both the contractors Victory Building Team as well as the Salvation Army for comment. But we have not heard back from either.