If the Bristol Motor Speedway (BMS) has their way, a couple summers from now you’ll be able to leave your headphones at home when attending Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway. The engine roars will be a little less loud, but the beer will be just as cold.
BMS has been in ongoing contract talks with Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway to hammer out a contract to improve the racetrack, targeting the 2023 race season for completion. Amongst the biggest improvements to the track would be a renovation that would cut the noise by 50 percent. Jerry Caldwell, the General Manager of BMS discussed the noise reduction with WKRN: “We can make a significant improvement to that sound impact on the community for all the motor sports events that take place out at the fairgrounds,” said Caldwell.
The main component in reducing the sound would be the installation of a sound mitigation wall on one of the raceway’s sides.
Caldwell continued: “This allows us to restore the Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway to its rightful place and address some of these quality-of-life concerns with the community, but without us being involved in this plan then I don’t believe those things would happen”.
The quality-of-life concerns Caldwell alluded to are in reference to concerns expressed by community members who doubt BMS can realistically reduce the noise level so drastically. Heidi Basgall Favorite, a community member told WKRN why she remains skeptical: “If they could achieve a 50 percent reduction in sound for race cars or loud event venues, they’d be doing this all over the country. They’re trying to use buildings as sound mitigation. Well, that’s like bouncing a ping pong ball. It’s going to hit, and it’s going to bounce all over.”
Nashville and BMS are still in the design planning stages and are yet to determine a final price. Until the details and dollars are agreed upon, you should probably keep those headphones handy.