Noise Complaint Fines Against Montreal's Bar Le Ritz Have Been Dropped

The venue was facing a pair of complaints made before the pandemic
Noise Complaint Fines Against Montreal's Bar Le Ritz Have Been Dropped
A pair of outstanding fines from pre-COVID noise complaints lodged against Montreal live music venue Bar Le Ritz PDB have been dropped by the city.

Bar co-owner and Montreal concert promoter Meyer Billurcu shared news of the court decision on social media today. Last week, it was reported that Bar Le Ritz was being taken to court over the complaints, despite the pandemic-related hit to revenue and multiple requests to delay the trials.

"In the end the prosecution dropped the charges because they felt we were acting in good faith by doing the soundproof renovations and reaching out to our neighbours letting them know what work we had done," Billurcu wrote. "The prosecutor wanted it known had it not been for that she would have pursued a guilty sentence as for her it was an open and shut case."

The pair of noise complaints — which carried fines of $985 each — were made in 2019, ahead of both the bar's pandemic shutdown and ownership's work to renovate the venue with further soundproofing measures.

Billurcu had previously explained that Bar Le Ritz did not receive noise complaints in its first 10 years of operation, attributing a rise in recent years to a changing neighbourhood.

He reiterated today, "I'm cautiously optimistic for the future but as more and more condos go up around the Ritz I fear the battle is far from over (as well we are still closed due to the pandemic). For now though I'll breath a huge sigh of relief...."

Even prior to the pandemic, rising rent and redevelopment have affected live music venues across the country. In Toronto alone, these factors have contributed to the loss of spaces including Hugh's Roomthe HoxtonSoyBomb HQ, Double Double Landthe Silver Dollar Room and more.