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Noise in the city, who would have thought?

By Alexandra Craig - 10 March 2015 36


The new pop-up shipping container village in New Acton opened over the weekend (yay!) with the Art, Not Apart festival to follow next weekend. The festival will include stalls selling street food and handicrafts, there’ll be live entertainment, fun and games on the basketball court, and a dance party. Sounds like good fun, right?

Not according to some.

The above image (originally posted to Reddit) is a flyer reportedly distributed by members of the Irate Residents of Acton group, which goes by the acronym IRA, to homes in the New Acton area. The flyer urges residents to complain to the government and festival organisers about noise levels.

The IRA even goes so far to say that Andrew Barr has a plan to reduce quality of life by raising city noise limits. Groan. Give me a break.

Even if these events are particularly noisy, the majority of properties in Acton are brand new and would surely block out most of the sound. I used to live in a new-ish (maybe about seven or eight years old) apartment right off the main drag in Gungahlin. It was noisy when I was out on the balcony, but as soon as I was inside and closed the door it was silent. Did not hear a thing.

If properties in Acton aren’t blessed with soundproofing, that’s unfortunate but um… YOU LIVE IN THE CITY. If you want peace and quiet, go live in Gundaroo.

This group also complained last year about a jazz festival in New Acton. They said that this kind of event was not okay in a residential area. In my opinion Acton isn’t as much a residential area as it is part of the city. What about all the events that are actually in residential areas that people learn to deal with? The residents of Watson put up with the noise of car burnouts at Summernats every summer, while the residents of Bruce seem to deal with the noise of concerts at the stadium without too much fuss.

Yes, noise is annoying. But the events the IRA is complaining about will not take place every night for the rest of eternity and they do not take place in the apartment next door. It astounds me that people move to the city and expect no public events or noise to disturb them. While our city is not comparable to Sydney or Melbourne, why should we have to be silenced at 8pm? People complain that Canberra is a boring city and that there’s not a lot to do – so our government puts on a fun event like this and people complain about the noise. Sheesh.

The IRA also took to Twitter to complain to Chief Minister Andrew Barr, saying that they will oppose the Westside dance party. Aside from ranting and raving on Twitter and writing emails, I’m not sure what powers its members have. They can complain on the night, they can even call the police if they want, but they’re not going to be able to have a whole event pulled down like they want.


Chief Minister Barr responded:




Aside from there being a pretty obvious difference between a dance party and a rave, the IRA is worried that they will become a permanent feature of Acton. Wow, maybe we’ll even become the rave capital of the world! That’s not such a bad idea, it would probably generate tons for the economy. Good suggestion, IRA!

Barr shot back:



I love it when a politician has a bit of sass.

Only a few more sleeps until the Westside dance party. In the meantime, I suggest the IRA take a road trip or invest in a pair of earplugs.

What’s Your opinion?

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36 Responses to
Noise in the city, who would have thought?
Alexandra Craig 4:17 pm 10 Mar 15

La_Tour_Maubourg said :

Similar situation to residents who knowingly purchase close to an airport, then complain about airport noise…

Why can’t we have more Darryl Kerrigan’s in the world?!

La_Tour_Maubourg 4:02 pm 10 Mar 15

Similar situation to residents who knowingly purchase close to an airport, then complain about airport noise…

Acton 2:49 pm 10 Mar 15

An ugly, intentionally ghetto like, construction to give us the type of recreation facility the local government believes we should have. Maybe it’s intended to make us feel all warm and ghetto-like inside.

This is all part of the grand Barr plan to densify Canberra by removing green spaces around the lake and nearby suburbs to cram in as many housing developments as possible. Hipsters rejoice.

Coinciding with construction of a pop-up shipping container village is the planned removal of our city’s long-standing and much loved paddle-boat, canoe and bike hire facilities. Used by visitors and locals for decades.

Then comes more box-like high density apartments – selling off land in the West Basin to developers for money to fund the you know what.

And here’s the best part – an urban beach. Geothermally heated.

Oh, for the power to send both him and the Skywhale floating off westward, into the sunset towards some distant island.

watto23 2:16 pm 10 Mar 15

wow imagine if there were people who complained about new acton being built in the first place (there probably were) then the IRA wouldn’t have been able to move into their swish new apartments to complain.

People want everything these days and then don’t want it to ever change, except that it was change that got them where they are now.

rubaiyat 12:47 pm 10 Mar 15

Did this go in the Guiness Book of Records as the world’s slowest “Pop-up”?

Postalgeek 12:18 pm 10 Mar 15

Holden Caulfield said :

I never thought I’d be on the side of the government against the IRA, but here we are, haha!

Down with the Irate Residents of Acton, what a bunch of wowsers.


Briefly flicking over the Irate Residents of Acton tweets, as with the Concerned Citizens of Canberra, I get the impression that their numbers are a lot less than they’d have us believe, and I’m being kind by using the third person plural pronoun.

rosscoact 12:16 pm 10 Mar 15

Old people are always complaining about something, it’s the ready access to printers that is a problem. Almost midnight on a Saturday? Outrageous!

chewy14 11:27 am 10 Mar 15

So you move close to the city to be near amenities, restaurants, bars, clubs, festivals etc.

Then complain about the noise of those amenities, restaurants, bars, clubs, festivals?


Dame Canberra 11:13 am 10 Mar 15

This Twitter exchange between Andrew Barr and the IRA is the best. I do love having a sassy Chief Minister.

dungfungus 10:58 am 10 Mar 15

I often wondered what could trump the folly of Kate Carnell’s futsal slab.
It took about 20 years to happen but Andrew Barr has done it with the pop-up village.
It’s a bit like one civilisation establishing its cultural footprint only to have the conquering civilisation build their contribution to history directly on top of it.
The invading African Moors built several mosques over the ruins of Catholic cathedrals in Spain only to see them revert to cathedrals when the King Ferdinand an Queen Isabel defeated them a few hundred years later.
It will probably take “an act of God” (in the form of a tornado) to bring those containers down to earth.
I now wonder what the Liberals will build there when the win the next election. A larger than life statue of Robert Menzies?
Whoops, Labor have already got something like that in Civic Square.

Holden Caulfield 10:06 am 10 Mar 15

I never thought I’d be on the side of the government against the IRA, but here we are, haha!

Down with the Irate Residents of Acton, what a bunch of wowsers.


pink little birdie 9:58 am 10 Mar 15

The only thing about the events in Bruce that is even mildly annoying is when I forget there is an event on and try to go out Braybrooke Street instead of Eardly. And even then someone is usually kind enough to let people in.

They live in the city they need to deal with it.

Solidarity 9:36 am 10 Mar 15

I’d be more worried about the ferals who are continually harassing people, and they’re a legitimate permanent fixture.

Heavs 9:27 am 10 Mar 15

Can you really call it a ‘pop up’ village if it took 8 months to construct?

Milly Withers 9:08 am 10 Mar 15

After reading all of that, the thing I can’t get over is the fact that they call themselves the IRA. Seriously?

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