The following is a guest post from Patrick Mayer:
This weekend roughly 150,000 people from all over this nation will be drawn to Road Atlanta for Formula D. There drivers will compete against each other in a high horsepower, high adrenaline sport know as drifting. Paired off they will race each other not just on the speed in which they can finish the course, but with the highest level of accuracy and style that each driver can lay down on the track. These 150,000 fans will spend big money on hotels, restaurants, and entertainment here. While this will be held on a racetrack with professional, six weekends a year the amateurs get together, rent the Turner Field Blue Lot, and try to see what it feels like to harness the power and skills like the pros.
But, it looks as though the Atlanta City Council does not want this to happen anymore. They are content with telling the 500 to 2000 people that regularly attend each of these six events that their are no longer welcome to buy permits, pay EMS and Police, and spend their money at the local hotels and restaurants because of “excessive noise”.
This “excessive noise” has been documented in a residential driveway bordering the Blue Lot at 73db during a very loud tandem run.
Fun facts 1: The loudest cat in the world purrs at this level, standard city traffic is usually measured around 80db, and fireworks displays (much like the ones held on Friday’s at the Ted) run around 120db.
Fun Facts 2: Even with drifting being banned by a city ordinance, there are going to be 9 SCCA events in the same lot up until November.
Not only do these events bring the 18-35 year old crowd that the local restaurants crave, but it also allows these drivers a controlled environment to practice and compete. The Turner Blue Lot is a certified and insured racetrack. This inexpensive and local venue is just what Atlanta needs when it is not being used for Braves parking.
Mr. Mayor, we in the automotive community here in Atlanta urge you to veto this ordinance. It does nothing to improve the schools, transportation problems, or the crime rate in Atlanta. It is just another way of saying “we don’t want people to come into Atlanta and have fun. Go spend your money somewhere else.
Is this really the message you want to spread?
Currently there are 9,000 people on Facebook that believe this is what you are saying, and there are over 6,800 people that have signed a petition saying the same thing. While these may not be City of Atlanta voters, motor sports enthusiensts have deep pockets and have a pretty good history of voting here in Georgia.
You can either allow Atlanta to be the city that continues to push people people away, or you can be the Mayor that decided it was a good idea to bring people into the city to spend their money, create great memories, and go away knowing that when they come back, they will bring more people.
At least it is more entertaining than a bunch of dirty hippies hanging out in park that required police protection…