December 10, 2022

Residents in the Harbour View area of North Suffolk appear split on a proposed conditional use permit to allow New Realm Brewery to host live entertainment.

The proposed permit, which the Planning Commission recommended last month on a 7-0 vote, is the subject of a public hearing before City Council Wednesday. Mayor Mike Duman had announced the $9 million project in his state of the city address in May. The proposal will be part of Blue Point at The Riverfront, an 18-acre mixed-use development off of Harbour View Boulevard. An $11 million Stay Suites hotel is also planned on the same property.

Overriding concerns among residents opposed to the project are the noise that would come from the live entertainment and the buffer between the proposed brewery and the adjacent neighborhood. The live entertainment proposed would primarily take place outdoors except in inclement weather, in which it would move indoors.

Glenn and Marsha Chase, who live near the proposed brewery, are among those who wrote to the city’s planning and community development office in opposition to it.

“Live entertainment in an outdoor venue just is not suitable for the location and the neighborhood we reside in,” they wrote.

Those supporting the proposed brewery cite the proximity of it and say they wouldn’t have to drive elsewhere for live entertainment.

“Many of our residents are very excited and thankful about New Realm’s investment in our community,” writes Belinda Arthur, who lives in the Riverfront Community in Harbour View. “It appears that New Realm will be providing a much-needed eatery and entertainment space for the community and will be taking great strides to (ensure) that it is a positive addition to the area.”

In all, the city planning office received 19 emails in support of the proposal and 10 against it, with many of the emails on both sides representing multiple people. Those emails came ahead of the commission’s public hearing, which had one person — a representative from Kimley Horn on behalf of the Blue Point Investment Group, the permit applicants — speak in favor and three spoke in opposition.

The proposed hours for the live music would be from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The typical hours of operation for New Realm’s brewery and restaurant would extend an hour beyond the end of the live entertainment.

The proposal for the venue also calls for a minimum 6-foot tall privacy fence and a 10-foot deep screening strip of evergreen trees or evergreen shrubs to be put in along the rear property line adjacent to the residential area. The outdoor components of the business will be at the front of the property about 300 feet from the nearest residential property.

The outdoor biergarten will have covered areas for tables, chairs, fire pits, outdoor tasting services and a water feature, and it is also planned to be dog friendly. There also will be a rooftop dining area, but no live entertainment is proposed for that area. Beer will be brewed onsite for the restaurant and tasting room, and the Blue Point Investment Group, which is the applicant for the permit request, states that New Realm’s live entertainment plans are meant to be family-friendly and not evoke a nightclub atmosphere.

The public hearing for New Realm’s permit requests is one of nine public hearings on council’s agenda Wednesday. The council’s regular meeting begins at 6 p.m. Wednesday, which follows a 4 p.m. work session at City Hall.

The full agenda for the meeting can be found online at

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