South End residents want blaring noise coming from pipe silenced

They’ve filed complaints but continue to deal with a piercing noise that can be heard inside and outside of their homes.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Residents in Charlotte’s South End neighborhood are frustrated and annoyed by a constant, loud, high-pitched sound coming from one of their neighbors and they want something to be done about it. 

It’s no secret, South End can be a noisy neighborhood to live in. 

Courtney Benjamin knew that when she moved into a townhome along Doggett Street. 

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However, she never expected a long-lasting, piercing sound to invade her home on a daily basis, she said. 

“It’s a very high-pitched humming noise that echoes,” she explained. 

The noise is coming from a pipe that she said was put up on the outside of the Hawk Apartments building in October of 2021.

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“We’ve been dealing with this for five months asking for help,” Lauren O’Brien, a neighbor who lives in the same townhome development, said. 

The black pipe hugs the building, reaching about three stories high. Its output is between the apartment building and a parking deck. O’Brien and Benjamin believe its placement only amplifies the sound. 

It’s unclear what the pipe is for. WCNC Charlotte asked management at the Hawk Apartments but they didn’t answer that question. 

“It goes 24/7 and our neighbors at the Hawk don’t seem as concerned about the problem we are,” O’Brien said. 

If you step inside their homes, you can hear the noise on all floors, at all times of the day and night. 

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“It’s very frustrating when to have that background noise when you just want to have some peace and quiet,” Benjamin said. 

They’ve both tried using sound machines just to try to sleep at night, but they haven’t been successful. 

“Nothing drowns it out because it is that high pitch piercing of a noise,” O’Brien said. 

They’ve even moved their primary bedrooms to the other side of their homes to try to get some peace and quiet. 

Benjamin and others have filed complaints with the city and police for what they believe is breaking the city’s noise ordinance. They reached out to their homeowners association, but they won’t budge on the issue, they said. Nothing has been done that’s actually fixed the sound, the neighbors added. 

WCNC Charlotte asked management at the Hawk Apartments for an on-camera interview. 

Instead, a spokesperson said, “While we have tested the noise level of the pipe and found it to be below local ordinance levels, we are investing in mitigation measures to lower the noise level further.” 

We asked how they plan to silence the pipe and when they would do it, but we haven’t heard back as of Friday night. 

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O’Brien is thinking about selling her home and moving due to the noise, she said. Both her and Benjamin hope it doesn’t have to get to that point and just want the noise to be silenced soon. 

“You know, be a good neighbor, put themselves in our shoes where we just want to go to sleep at the end of the day,” Benjamin said. “We want to have a little bit of peace and quiet and not have that 24/7, blaring noise coming across the street.”

Contact Hunter Sáenz at hsaenz@wcnc.com and follow him on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

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